Garden to Table: Bitter Melon (Goya) Namashi

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My bitter melon plant seems to be growing nicely. The vines are lush and plentiful. The fruits aren’t that big but there seem to be a few bitter melons (goya) that I can harvest about every other day.

I’ve been making goya omelets for breakfast. I feel like it is a healthy, protein rich way to start my day.

I recently went to the doctor and for the first time ever, my blood test showed that my cholesterol was in the healthy range. I have had a slightly high cholesterol level ever since I was young, so I was happy to hear the great news. It might be a mistake or an anomaly but if not, I believe that it might be related to the goya that I have been eating more regularly.

Even though it is yummy, it can get boring eating goya omelet every morning. So, today, I decided to try making a goya namashi. I looked it up recipes on the internet and this is how I made mine.

I seeded and thinly sliced the goya and let it sit in about a teaspoon of salt. Rather than throw the seeds away, I save the seeds and throw them on the ground at my bitter melon patch. I love seeing the new vines coming out. After letting the goya sit in the salt for about 15 minutes, I lightly rinse it and drain the water. I then added about 1/4 cup of rice vinegar and 1/4 cup of sugar. I added a splash of shoyu and a dash of garlic shichimi togarashi. (I bought my garlic shichimi in Japan, but let me know if you can find it locally. Here is an Amazon link to a similar product.) Let it sit in the fridge for a few hours and it is ready to serve.

I like this side dish very much and make it every so often. Living Hilo Style.


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