A feast of bitter gourd to cool off hot summer
Foshan China 2021-04-23 09:41

On recent days, the first harvest season this year for Dading bitter gourd arrived in Nanhai, Foshan. As we all know, people from Nanhai have a preference for eating seasonal food. One chef even made over 120 dishes out of fresh Dading bitter gourd. Let’s have a closer look at this unique vegetable to cool off the heat.




Discover more than 120 bitter gourd dishes


Well known as a local specialty in Tanbian Village, Shishan Town, Nanhai District, Dading bitter gourd is usually categorized into two varieties - traditional “green” gourd and “white jade” gourd. Compared to the bitter gourds we normally eat, Dading bitter gourd contains 10% more of sugar. It tastes more chewy, refreshing and sweet. Every year during this season, foodies from all over China will flock to Nanhai for a taste.




As advised by experts, Dading bitter gourd is an ideal food for those diagnosed with diabetes and defending against cancers as it helps clear off body heat and toxins, improving eyesight, and lowering blood sugar.

Local restaurants this year throw a bigger feast of Dading bitter gourd by adding 10 more dishes to the existing 110-dish menu, hoping diners can discover brand-new tastes. 




First off, you should try fried rice with crab and chopped gourd grain. When rice, crab and gourd grain combines perfectly together, the dish tastes refreshing and your appetize will be worked up for more.




Then there goes another most wanted dish - braised pork with bitter gourd. Sight bitterness matching with savory pork, half fat and half lean, the dish doesnt taste greasy at all.




Plus, tangerine peel rib with bitter gourd is another interesting dish to mention. The bitter gourd was craved as cute little round "baskets", holding tangerine peel ribs. You can eat the whole thing, including the "basket".


Dishes listed above are just a tip of an iceberg. Here are more in the pictures.



Little spinefoot fish soaked in bitter gourd tea


Bitter gourd tofu, fish balls soaked in bitter gourd seedlings, crispy bitter gourd "pie", sashimi and everything either fried, stewed, stewed or steamed.


Classic iced bitter gourd and bitter gourd sashimi


Many local restaurants have been focusing on bitter gourd dishes for more than a decade. A feast of bitter gourd is widely known as one of the top ten famous feasts in Nanhai District. When summer approaches, one single restaurant can sell 3000 kilograms of Dading gourd dishes per day.


Dading bitter gourd: special in its own way‍‍ 

Come to Tanbian Village, and you will find out that this picturesque place has a long history of growing bitter gourd for more than 80 years, even aired multiple times by national television.




Dading bitter gourd airred on CCTV 


Local Dading bitter gourds look more fleshy with fewer calabashes, a big “head” and a small body, which looks like an enlarged version of green pepper. Green as it appears, Dading bitter gourd tastes crispy, sweet and cool.


Every 5 a.m. to 6 a.m. is the best pick-up time for Dading bitter gourd. As nourished by early morning dew and temperature changes, bitter gourds yielded around this hour tastes sweeter, cooler and crispier. After being picked up, they will be shipped right away to nearby restaurants as ingredients for delicacies.


Author | Jersey
Revisor | Eleanor, Jessica
Photo | Song Zitan, Deng Jiaxin, Yang Rongyan, Foshan News Network