Bitter melon stuffed with spiced tomatoes

  • Preparation Time10 mins
  • Cooking Time25 mins
  • Serves4
  • DifficultyEasy
4 bitter melons
2 tbsp grapeseed oil
1 onion, chopped
35g chopped ginger
15g dried curry leaves
2 tbsp garam masala
1 tsp mustard seeds
1 tsp ground turmeric
Pinch salt
1 large tomato, chopped
1) Preheat the oven to 210C/Gas 7. Cut the melons in half lengthwise and scoop out the pulp and seeds to create a pocket on the inside of each half. Set aside.

2) Put the oil in a large skillet over a medium-high heat, add the onion and ginger and cook for 4 minutes, until the onion is soft and golden. Add the spices and salt, and toast for 30 seconds.

3) Add the tomato and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Allow to cool slightly and then spoon the filling into the bitter melon halves. Put the halves back together and tie together with some kitchen string.

4) Put the remaining oil in a clean skillet and place over a medium-high heat. Brown the stuffed melons on all sides and then place them on a baking sheet. Bake until the melons are tender, about 5 to 7 mins.

Cook's Note: To remove excess bitterness from the melons, generously salt each side of the cut melons and leave to sit in a colander for 15 to 20 mins. Rinse well to remove all salt and then continue with the recipe.

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