Bitter and salty flavors are blended together in this unique and highly nutritious salad from Vincent Yap at The Westin, Philippine Plaza. This salad makes a refreshing appetizer, although the bitterness of the melon and the strong flavor of the fermented baby shrimp (bagoong alamang) may take some getting used to for non-Filipinos.
- 4 small bitter melons (about 12 oz/350 g), deseeded and sliced
- 1 tablespoon salt
- 5 shallots, sliced
- 1 tablespoon fermented baby shrimp (bagoong alamang)
- 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
- 5 red bird’s eye chilies (siling labuyo), sliced (optional)
- 1 tablespoon kalamansi lime juice or lemon juice
1 Sprinkle the bitter melons with the salt and place them in a colander for 30 minutes to drain. Rinse off the salt and dab the melon slices with paper towels to remove excess moisture.
2 In a large mixing bowl, toss the melon slices with the remaining ingredients. Allow to stand for 10 minutes to let the flavors develop, then serve.
Makes 4 cups
Preparation time: 20 mins