Growing up with bitter melons (pare, paria) for salad, stir fry and dumpling, I never thought making them for an omelette. I first tasted a bitter melon omelette when I ordered it at a Chinese restaurant in the south part of Winnipeg. This restaurant is close to a University that many Asian students live surround the area.
To make this bitter melon omelette, there are no exact ingredients to spice up. As long as you have a bitter melon(s), eggs, salt and pepper, that’s all matter. In this recipe, I enhanced with fish sauce and a small amount of hot curry powder.
I learned how to make puffy omelette from my roommate when I was in Bogor. She said, “add water to make a puffy omelette.”
Anyway, I brought this omelette along with sate kerang (clam saté/satay) for my potluck party last Saturday.
Bitter Melon Omelette
1 bitter melon (about 200 g)
2 tablespoons water
1 stalk leek, take the white part and slice thinly
5 stalks Chinese chive, cut into 1-inch (or 3-cm) long
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1/4 teaspoon hot curry powder (optional)
2 bird eyes chilies (optional)
3 tablespoons olive oil
ground white pepper
1. Halve and seed bitter melons, scraping out soft pith with spoon. Slice thinly; toss with salt and let stand for 15 – 20 minutes. Rinse in cold water; drain, dry with tea towel and set aside.
2. Beat together eggs, water, fish sauce, curry powder and ground white pepper.
3. Add bitter melon, leek and Chinese chives; mix well.
4. On a stove, heat a pan to medium. Grease the pan with oil. Pour mixture into the pan. Level surface of mixture gently.
5. Cook over low heat until puffy and lightly browned on bottom, about 5 minutes. Lift omelette at edge to judge colour.
6. Cover the pan with its lid and transfer to a preheated oven 350 F (180 C). Bake in a oven for 8 to 10 minutes or until a knife inserted in centre comes out clean.
Water is generally recommended for omelettes. The water will turn to steam, producing a light, airy omelette.