Long time no write. I forgot how to write and fortunately still remember how to cook. There are so many things to manage. Not to complaining, I’m just telling. Okay let’s start with the new recipe.
I suddenly remember many many years ago, when my mother got papaya flower from neighbor. My neighbor had a garden with papaya tree. Not a common species of papaya, we said in Bahasa Indonesia: Pepaya Gantung (Hanging Papaya). The flower and fruits has longer stalk than common papaya. My mother cooked it. For a child like me, it had strange taste. It was bitter, absolutely. It was spicy for certain, stunk my tongue and my mouth. But somehow, I remember it was delicious. Maybe that’s why it is called delicacy.
Last couple week ago, I found the same flower in fresh market nearby. I called my mother to ask how to cook it. Below, there’s something I don’t use that my mother always use it. It is teri, salted tiny sea fish (anchovy).
400 g papaya flower, wash, soak in water for about 15 minutes
3 cloves of garlic, sliced
5 shallots, sliced
1 salam leaf
1 pieces galangal root (about 5 cm), crushed
1 pieces ginger (about 3 cm), crushed
5 red chilies, sliced
5 green chilies, sliced
2 teaspoons cooking oil
2 teaspoons pepper
To reduce the bitterness, we have to treat the flower first. Some people use baking soda. But my mother usually boils the flower in salted water.
So..boil the water, add 1 tablespoon salt, then add the flower.
When it gentle enough, half done (look fresh but not as fresh as when it still raw) take the flower out, drain it.
Set the heat in high, pour cooking oil.
Sauté sliced garlic, sliced shallots, sliced red and green chillies.
Then add crushed galangal root, crushed ginger, and salam leaf. Sauté until it is fragrant.
Then, add the half boiled papaya flower.
Don’t forget sugar and salt as necessary. Pepper..of course, don’t ever forget it.
This is another way to reduce the bitterness, make it as spicy as we can..:D