Goya Champuru

If you choose a bitter melon(called goya in Japanese) as one of your pre- summer supper ingredients, you are making the right decision! 
I think it’s time to build up our body to fight against summer heat and humidity! Don't you agree?
Have you ever tried goya? If you’re like me, yes. I know how you feel. Well, appearance doesn’t tell us everything.

Goya is actually a heart-healthy food. Originally this vegetable is from Okinawa, in the southernmost prefecture in Japan. And, one of the most major dishes that uses goya is called ‘goya champuru’.  You will find this dish in almost all Okinawa restaurants in Japan. Well, it is probably like margarita pizza in an Italian restaurant, Mongolian beef in Chinese restaurant. Yes, Goya champuru is a staple dish in this region.

I assume everyone who has never heard about this is very curious to know what the weird name of this dish is… I will tell you. It is a combination of goya, tofu and eggs.  The bitterness of goya and mildness of the eggs creates a perfect combination! And for beer!  You will be amazed how much you get addicted to it. If we categorize goya, goya is one of the groups of watermelons, cucumbers and squash.

Everyone knows eggs are your powerful friend rich in proteins, and healthy fats, vitamins, minerals. In the past, eggs were considered to be unhealthy because of the cholesterol amount content. However, lots of researchers have proven that cholesterol in eggs does not directly affect cholesterol in blood level. There are two kinds of cholesterol, HDL (good cholesterol)and LDL(bad choresterol). HDL is good cholesterol helps to remove bad, unnecessary cholesterol from our body. Some other researchers even prove that eating two eggs 5 times a week actually slims down your body. Erica Angyal who is an nutritionist and health consultant of Miss Universe Japan describes eggs as our good partner for our beauty.

Now, let’s talk about goya!
Surprisingly, goya is very low in calories, rich in phytonutrients like antioxidants, fiber, iron and great deal of vitamins! These works well to reduce blood sugar, reduces blood pressure, lowers body temperature, and helps you to maintain balanced body!

Here’s how we make goya champuru.
·         1 goya (bitter gourd)
·         1 block tofu
·         2 eggs, beaten
·         2 tsp soy sauce
·         2 tsp sake
·         salt and pepper
·         sesame oil for frying
1) Cut goya in half in length. Remove seeds with hands.
2) Slice thinly and put them in a bowl, squished with a little bit of salt. This helps to remove bitterness. Let it sit this about 5 minutes. Then wash goya and gently wrap with cotton paper.
3) Pour a tbsp of sesame oil in a pan with scrambled eggs. Stir goya until the color turns into transparency. Then, add tofu and beaten eggs, a little bit of salt and pepper, sake. Stir quickly.

These would be the delightful nutrients for a healthy dinner on weeknights! 

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