Monday, 7 March 2011

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Chinese Braised Bitter Gourd with Chicken/苦瓜[kǔ guā]


Serves 4

Preparation & Cooking Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
- 1 large bitter gourd, approximately 300 to 400 grams
- 800 grams of chicken drumsticks or chicken fillet cut into bite sized pieces
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- a knob of ginger the size of 1/2 inch, minced
- 2 TBS cooking oil
- 1 TBS of fermented black beans
- 1 TBS oyster sauce
- 1/2 tsp brown sugar
- 2 TBS ground oatmeal (optional, for thickening the sauce)
- 1 - 1.5 cup water

Directions:
1. Heat cooking oil in a wok and fry the ginger and garlic until fragrant.

2. Add the fermented black beans and continue stir-frying quickly.

3. Add bitter gourd and stir-fry for 1 minute, then add chicken and stir fry for 2 minutes until the skin of the chicken is a little brown.

4. Transfer to a pot, pour in the water and add oyster sauce and the sugar.

5. Bring the stew to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer covered for 5 minutes. Check constantly to make sure there is sufficient gravy and add water if necessary.

6. Add ground oatmeal and 2 TBS water to make into a mixture and stir in the stew.

7. Once the gravy turns thick and the bitter gourd has softened, you can turn it off.

8. Dish and serve with rice.

Nutritional Value:
Bitter gourd is rich in vitamin A, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B2, Vitamin C, Iron, Calcium, Phosphorous, copper and potassium.

Bitter Melon is very helpful in regulating the blood sugar levels and as a diabetic cure. It is also used to treat hypertension, eye complications, neuritis and defective metabolism of carbohydrates. It is also said to increase the body's resistance against infection. Bitter gourd is proven effective in treating blood disorders like blood boils, itching, scabies, psoriasis, ring-worm and other fungal diseases. Bitter melon aids digestion and can be used by those with digestive disorders and constipation.

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Additional Information:
I made this dish for dinner this evening, as I wanted Joshua to get used to eating bitter gourd and bitter food. Joshua ate well, and Florian could take it as well :-)

References:
http://masak-masak.blogspot.com/2005/04/healthy-bitter-gourd.html

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