Braised Yellow Croaker with Bittermelon

Without Chinese fermented black beans, this Braised Yellow Croaker Fish with Bittermelon can still be perfected in its own way and enjoyed at its best.

Besides complementing well with chicken (Braised Chicken with Bittermelon), bittermelon also goes well with fish. The bitterness of this melon cuts through the briny subtly-sweet fish and brings balance to a otherwise single-dimensional savory dish.

Quick-Braised Yellow Croaker with Bittermelon
1/2 shallots, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 tsp minced ginger
1 chili padi, thinly sliced, remove some seeds if you do not like it spicy
6 pan-fried yellow croaker fish* (recipe and instructions here)
1/2 medium-size bitter melon, thinly sliced (refer here for how to reduce bitterness)
Ground white pepper
1-2tsp Chinese cooking wine
1/2 tsp brown sugar

Directions: Dish out and set aside the pan-fried fish. With the remaining oil in the pan, add the ginger, shallots and fry for about 2 minutes. Add the garlic and bittergourd, give it a good mix, pinch of ground pepper. Add some water to moisten, cover the pot and simmer for about 3-5 minutes till bittermelon is tender, and cooked. Add in the fish, pinch of ground white pepper, brown sugar, cover the pot and simmer at low-medium heat, about 5-8 minutes to braise the fish and bitteremlon further, allowing flavors to develop. Splash in cooking wine, gently turning the fish in the pan, while gently stirring the bittermelon. Braise till the braising liquid is reduced.

*Little yellow croaker fish or yellow corvina, is a species of croaker native to the western Pacific, generally in temperate waters such as the East China Sea and the Yellow Sea. The fish is small and lean, with tender flesh. It is a good source of protein, Vitamin Bs and calcium.

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