Andy Wai’s Bitter Melon Omelette

Preparation Time: 25 Minutes
Cooking Time: 5-6 Minutes

This unusual and delightful recipe comes from the imaginative and creative Andy Wai of the Harbor Village Restaurant in San Francisco. You can find bitter melon in Chinese and Asian supermarkets, or use courgettes, which are prepared in exactly the same way.


  • 450g (1 lb) bitter melon or courgettes
  • 1 tablespoonplus 1 teaspoonsalt
  • 6 eggs, beaten
  • 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons sesame oil
  • tablespoons groundnut (peanut) oil


  1. Wash the bitter melon or courgettes and cut in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds and cut the flesh into fine slices. In a bowl, mix with 1 tablespoon of the salt. Turn into a colander and stand for 20 Minutes. Rinse well in cold water and drain.
  2. Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Slip in the melon slices, bring back to the boil and blanch for 1 minute. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain well on kitchen paper.
  3. Combine the eggs with the remaining salt, soy sauce and sesame oil. Add the melon slices.
  4. Heat a wok over high heat until it is hot. Add the oil, and when it is very hot and slightly smoking, add the egg mixture. Gather the edges into the middle, letting the liquid egg run underneath, and continue to cook until it sets. Then flip the omelette over and cook the other side until it is golden brown.
  5. Serve at once while hot.