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Leftovers For Days

21 Feb

After the Housewarming, there were surprisingly very few leftovers thanks to doggy bags sent home with the fam. We did, however, have a dozen or so uncooked stuffed bitter melon and a container of the Thit Kho (braised pork with eggs). Perfect for dinners and lunches over the next few days. Also they give me a chance to show you what they look like since I was remiss in taking photos the day of.

I’ve now learned that it’s better to remove soups from the stove, or enterprising old ladies may fire up the burners to heat their individual bowl. And leave it on for the rest of the day. I probably turned off the burner under boiling pots of soup three or four times throughout the day. Unfortunately this meant the Thit Kho, in particular, was overcooked and the meat not as tender. See how dark the meat is? Should be that way. Still pretty tasty, though. There are those spring rolls, too. Crisped up (mostly) in a 230 degree oven for 10 minutes or so.

Thit Kho and Egg Rolls for lunch.

Thit Kho and Egg Rolls for lunch.

I cooked up the rest of the bitter melon the next night for dinner. As I had already stuffed the bitter melon, dinner was easy as one, two, three. I’ve started thinking of the key seasonings as the Three Amigos, as they go everywhere together. Fish Sauce, who I envision as the Chevy Chase Amigo.  Sugar, as Steve Martin of course. And Mushroom Seasoning – the Martin Short. Makes sense, no?

Fish Sauce, Sugar and Mushroom Seasoning

“Three Amigos” of Vietnamese cooking: Fish Sauce, Sugar and Mushroom Seasoning.

This time, I even kept track of the seasoning amounts for you. Wasn’t that nice?

Canh Kho Qua (Pork Stuffed Bitter Melon Soup)

1 32 oz. container Low Sodium Chicken Broth

2 cups water

10 shakes fish sauce

5 soup spoons mushroom seasoning

2 soup spoons sugar

Of course these are flavors to our liking, start with less, let come to a boil and add to taste. Add the broth and water to a stock pot and some of the seasoning, bring to a boil. Add the stuffed bitter melon and continue cooking for 20 minutes or until the pork is cooked. Some people like the bitter melon flesh softer than others. Taste the broth as you go and add seasoning until you find the right combo.

Voila! Dinner is served. Some prefer to serve atop rice with little broth. I like it as a soup with rice on the side to sop up with the flavorful broth spoon by spoon.

Canh Kho Qua - Bitter Melon with Pork Soup

Canh Kho Qua – Bitter Melon with Pork Soup

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