Adam Liaw's bitter gourd ohitashi

Adam Liaw's bitter gourd ohitashi

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Gluten Free
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January 2017 cover star Adam Liaw has a knack for making Japanese cooking really easy and tasty. Change things up with this bitter gourd is perfect.


  • ½ bitter gourd
  • ¼ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp sesame oil
  • ¼ tsp Boosted Soy Sauce
  • 1 tsp bonito flakes


To prepare the bitter gourd, cut it in half lengthways and scoop out the seeds and spongy white pith with a spoon. Slice thinly and scatter with the salt. Allow to stand for 15 minutes. Bring a small saucepan of water to a rolling boil and add the bitter gourd. Blanch for 20 seconds then transfer to a bowl of iced water. Drain well, squeezing out as much water as possible, then dress with the sesame oil and Boosted Soy Sauce and scatter with bonito flakes.

In putting together a Japanese meal, small dishes like this provide important variety and contrast.

These recipes are an edited extract from The Zen Kitchen by Adam Liaw, published by Hachette Australia. Available in all good book stores, $49.99.

Grab the January 2017 issue of nourish magazine for more on Adam Liaw and his creative, easy Japanese recipes.

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