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How to Reduce Bitterness of Bitter Melon?

by Shirley

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how to reduce bitterness of bitter melon

Bitter Melon is a superfood gourd that provides loads of nutrients and health benefits. Depending on the varieties, Bitter Melon can taste utterly bitter. If you are searching for solutions to reduce the sharp bitterness of bitter melon, search no more. I am so glad you have come to the right place.

In this article, I am going to show you step-by-step how to prepare Bitter Melon for delicious cooking. With this knowledge and easy to follow tutorial, you will be ready to cook all kinds of delicious food featuring Bitter Melon. Bitter Melon Rib Soup, Bitter Melon with Eggs, Stuffed Bitter Melon with Minced Pork, you name it.

How to reduce bitterness of bitter melon?
How to reduce bitterness of bitter melon for cooking delicious food featuring Bitter Melon

Step 1 is to cut Bitter Melon vertically and remove the seeds and pith thoroughly to reduce the bitterness of Bitter Melon

Unless you are making Stuffed Bitter Melon, this step applies to all cooking featuring Bitter Melon slices or chunks. See here for how to prepare Bitter Melon for Stuffed Bitter Melon.

Trim off both ends first, and then use hands with the help of a small spoon or similar tool to have a good scraping and remove both the seeds and pith thoroughly. They are the major source of the bitterness.

Remove the pith of bitter melon
Remove the seeds and pith of bitter melon

Step 2 is to marinate Bitter Melon with salt

Sprinkle salt, either Himalayan Pink Salt or Sea Salt, over the open Bitter Melon chamber. Rub the salt into the Bitter Melon alongside the chamber. Let it rest for about 10 to 30 minutes while you are preparing for other ingredients.

Marinate Bitter Melon with Salt

Step 3 is to rinse off the salt throughly first before cutting Bitter Melon into desired shapes or sizes for cooking

Place the Bitter Melon in a large wash basin filled with cold water, and have a good scrub inside the Bitter Melon chamber. Change the water a few times.

This is a very important step, as we are accomplishing two goals here. For one, we want to remove the excess salt so that the final dish doesn’t taste extremely salty. More importantly, the bitter juice induced by the salt is seeping out and remains on the top layer of Bitter Melon. The rinse and scrubbing will make sure we remove the bitter juice as well.

Cut Bitter Melon into thin slices using a Mandoline Slicer
Cut Bitter Melon into thin slices using a Mandoline Slicer

You might wonder, can I cut the Bitter Melon first before washing and rinsing? Not really. This is becuse the bitter juice sticks to surface of the bitter melon. A mere rinse won’t get rid of them, only a good scrubbing will do. It is so much easier to scrub a long half tube compared to many small pieces.

Step 3 is to blanch bitter melon with white vinegar to further reduce the bitterness of Bitter Melon

Use a stockpot that has 4 Qt. or higher capacity. Fill the stockpot with 75% water, add 1/4 cup and bring it to a boil. Then add the Bitter Melon pieces along with 1/4 cup white vinegar and wait until it reaches a boil again.

Following that, remove the Bitter Melon from the pot using a skimmer and place into a stainless steel colander. Rinse under the running cold tap water for about 30 seconds.

Blanch bitter melon slices

That’s it! That simple. Now you are ready to cook all kinds of nutritous and tasty food featuring Bitter Melon.

how to reduce bitterness of bitter melon

How to Reduce Bitterness of Bitter Melon for Cooking?

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Bitter Melon is a superfood gourd that provides loads of nutrients and health benefits. Learn step-by-step how to prepare Bitter Melon to reduce the bitterness of Bitter Melon for delicious cooking. With this knowledge and easy to follow tutorial, you will be ready to cook all kinds of delicious food featuring Bitter Melon.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb bitter melon, about 2-3 bitter melons, use 1 tsp Himalayan pink salt to marinate bitter melon
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 3 Qt water, for blanching

Instructions

  1. Wash and rinse bitter melon well. Trim both ends off, and then cut Bitter Melon vertically and remove the seeds and pith thoroughly using hands with the help of a small spoon.
    Remove the pith of bitter melon
  2. Sprinkle salt, either Himalayan Pink Salt or , over the open Bitter Melon chamber. Rub the salt into the Bitter Melon alongside the chamber. Let it rest for about 10 to 30 minutes while you are preparing for other ingredients.
    Marinate Bitter Melon with Salt
  3. Place the Bitter Melon in a large filled with cold water, and have a good scrub inside the Bitter Melon chamber. Change the water a few times.
  4. Cut the Bitter Melon into slices or chunks per the food you plan to cook.
    Cut Bitter Melon into thin slices using a Mandoline Slicer
  5. Use a stockpot that has 4 Qt. or higher capacity. Fill the stockpot with 75% water, add 1/4 cup of white vinegar and bring it to a boil. Then add the Bitter Melon pieces and wait until it reaches a boil again.
    Blanch bitter melon slices
  6. Remove the Bitter Melon from the pot using a skimmer and place into a stainless steel colander. Rinse under the running cold water for about 30 seconds till they fully cool down.
  7. All don! Now you are ready to cook all kinds of nutritous and tasty food featuring Bitter Melon.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 48Total Fat: 0gSaturated Fat: 0gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 0gCholesterol: 0mgSodium: 215mgCarbohydrates: 10gFiber: 5gSugar: 5gProtein: 2g

Nutrition calculation is provided by Nutritionix to the best knowledge per ingredients description and isn't always accurate.

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4 comments

Jesse-Gabriel November 1, 2021 - 6:39 pm

Thank you for the great blog article!
I just wonder how many nutrients are left if I have to process a vegetable so much beforehand !?
Regards,
Jesse-Gabriel

Reply
Shirley November 1, 2021 - 9:30 pm

Hi Jesse-Gabriel,these are old fashioned way inducing the bitter juice out, which doesn’t impact the nutrients that much.

Reply
Jesse-Gabriel November 2, 2021 - 4:44 pm

Thanks for the answer!
Jesse-Gabriel

Reply
Shirley November 3, 2021 - 8:21 am

Sure thing! Thank you for stopping by.

Reply

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