Bitter Melon Stir-Fry

Bitter Melon Stir-Fry

A savory Okinawan specialty that combines the unique flavor of bitter melon with pork and tofu.

Cooking time
10 minutes
  • Nutrition facts are for one serving.
  • Calculation of nutritional values does not include salt massaged into the bitter melon.

Ingredients(Servings: 2)

Ingredients(Servings: 2)

100 g (3.5 oz.)

as desired

1/2 block


1 Tbsp


  1. Cut the pork into 4 to 5 cm (2 in.) lengths. Use a spoon to completely remove seeds and cotton from the bitter melon and then slice into 5 mm (0.2 in.) thick half moons, massage in some salt, set aside for about 5 minutes, then rinse off the salt in running water. Remove excess moisture from the tofu and cut into easy-to-eat slices. Beat the egg.
  2. Heat the sesame oil in a fry pan over medium heat, add in the tofu and cook so that it turns golden brown. Next add in ingredients in the order of bitter melon and then pork and continue to stir-fry.
  3. Once the ingredients are cooked through, adjust the flavor with the soy sauce, pour in the beaten egg, quickly cook to harden, then serve onto plates with a sprinkle of dried bonito flakes on top.

Cooking Basics

Bitter melon - removing seeds and cotton

Cut the bitter melon in half lengthwise and then scrape out the seeds and cotton with a spoon.

Bitter melon - soaking in salt

Thinly slice up the bitter melon and then place into an approximately 5% salt/water solution. Gently stir and then set aside for about 10 minutes. This method is preferred to massaging salt into sliced bitter melon since the crunchiness will be preserved and a delicate salty taste will be added. Pat dry before using.

Tofu - draining

Wrap tofu in paper towel and set aside for 15 to 20 minutes. This method works best if the tofu is cut into the desired sized pieces beforehand to remove excess moisture.  
Or wrap tofu in paper towel, place on a tray or other suitable surface and place a weight of 500~1000 g (17.7~35.3 oz.) on top and set aside for about appropriate minutes to release as much moisture as possible.


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