Stir-fried bitter melon with black bean sauce

This recipe is one of my favourites, partly because it brings back childhood memories of the fragrance of black bean sauce mixed with garlic that often greeted me at the door. So it was natural for me to cook this dish for my family in Kaiping, and I was thrilled that they loved it.

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  • 700g/1┬Żlb bitter melon, halved lengthways and de-seeded
  • 1 tbsp groundnut or vegetable oil
  • 100g/4oz fresh mild red chillies, halved, de-seeded and finely sliced
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh ginger
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped garlic
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped shallots
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped spring onions
  • 3 tbsp black beans, coarsely chopped
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine (or dry sherry)
  • 150ml/5fl oz chicken stock or water

For the garnish