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Atsara

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TasunkaWitko View Drop Down
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Joined: 25 January 2010
Location: Chinook, MT
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    Posted: 28 November 2011 at 10:25
Atsara
Bitter Melon and Cucumber Salad
 
This specialty from the Phillippines comes from Time/Life's Foods of the World - Pacific and Southeast Asian Cooking, 1970
 
 
To serve 4 to 6
 
1 medium-sized bitter melon (about 1 to 1.5 pounds)*
1 medium-sized cucumber, peeled
4 teaspoons coarse salt, or substitute 1 tablespoon regular salt
1/2 cup finely-chopped onions
3 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
 
Wash the bitter melon under cold water and pat it dry with paper towels. Cut it in half lengthwise and scoop out the seeds by running the tip of a spoon down each half. with a small knife, cut V-shaped grooves, about 1/4-inch deep and spaced 1/2-inch apart, the entire length of the cucumber. Then slice the melon and cucumber crosswise into 1/8-inch thick half-rounds.
 
To remove some of the bitterness and mositure from the melon, place it in a deep bowl, add the salt and squeeze the melon vigorously with both hands. Let the melon rest at room temperature for 10 to 15 minutes. wash it in a sieve under cold water. Squeeze the pieces dry.
 
Combine the melon, cucumbers and onions in a serving bowl; pour in the vinegar and toss gently but thoroughly together. Taste for seasoning. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
 
*NOTE: Canned bitter melon may be substituted for fresh. Simply slice it and toss with the onions, cucumber and vinegar in a bowl.
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