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Stuffed Bitter Melon

Fish and Seafood

Stuffed Bitter Melon
1 pound, or two bitter melons
1 Tablespoon fermented black beans
1 pound ground pork
1 scallion, minced
12 dried shrimp, optional
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 Tablespoon dry sherry
1 teaspoon corn starch
1 teaspoon thin soy sauce
2 teaspoons sugar
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons peanut oil
2 teaspoons corn starch mixed with two tablespoons water
1. Cut the bitter melon across the narrow way into one-inch sections. Remove the seeds and pulp and discard. Set the circles aside.
2. Rinse black beans in cold water, drain, and discard the water. 3. Soak the dried shrimp in warm water for half an hour or until soft. Drain and mince them.
4. Combine ground pork, shrimp, scallion, soy sauce, corn starch, half the sugar, and the pepper and salt. Mix with a fork or chopsticks in one direction for half a minute. Stuff this mixture into the center of the bitter melon rings.
5. Mix sherry, light soy sauce, sugar, and one cup of water.
6. Heat oil and brown the stuffed bitter melon rings on both sides. Then add garlic and black beans; stir-fry a few seconds and add the sherry-soy sauce mixture. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer for twenty minutes. Remove the stuffed melon rings to a serving dish. Reserve the sauce.
7. Add the cornstarch-water mixture to the remaining sauce. Heat until thickened, then pour over the stuffed bitter melon, and serve.

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