Kampung-Style Fried Bitter Gourd with Chilli

This kampung-style fried bitter gourd with chilli is indeed a must-have for an authentic, rustic kampung (malay word meaning village) meal. The ingredients are simple but delicious. Better yet, perfect for when you’re tired but still want to eat something that is healthy but really quick to put together.

Living in a kampung is indeed a once-in-a-lifetime experience for anyone out there. A sedate and peaceful living, kampungs are truly a treasure trove of heritage and old-school practices in Asian countries such as Malaysia. So, if you have been thinking for sometime about going on a trip to Malaysia or any other Asian country, skip the whole glamorous and luxury stay in metropolitan cities and instead, find quaint little kampungs around that will give you a real taste of simple living, including dishes such as these.

Trust us, the experience will change you.

A Kampung Diet

Different than the rich, decadent palate of the city with its ‘everything-deep-fried’ food, the diet of a kampung dweller is simple. We give more importance to the natural flavours of the ingredient, be it a vegetable or meat, when preparing a dish.

Most kampung dishes are made using local herbs and vegetables that are rich in nutrients and health benefits. One of such recipes is the fried bitter gourd with chilli.

Bitter Goodness

Bitter gourd is an example of a great kampung ingredient. Bitter gourd grows in the wild, but now is grown in many home gardens. This green, bitter-tasting vegetable can be prepared in so many ways. You can fry it, boil it, bake it, make it into soup or even a spicy condiments, like sambal.

Besides, bitter gourd is known to have many health benefits including controlling the blood sugar levels of diabetic patients due to its high insulin content. Amazing, right?

So, come on and experience the life of Malaysians in kampungs by preparing this delicious fried bitter gourd with chilli recipe and discover simplicity again with this nutritious dish.


  • 650g (about 2) bitter gourds
  • 4 tablespoons cooking oil
  • 3 red chillies
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric powder
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 onion, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons of dried shrimp
  • Salt to taste


  1. Cut the bitter gourd lengthwise and remove the seeds. Slice the bitter gourd to about 1/2 inch in thickness.
  2. Place the sliced bitter gourd in a bowl filled with water and 2 tablespoons of salt. Soak for 15 minutes.
  3. Blend the chilli, garlic and turmeric.
  4. Heat up 4 tablespoons of oil in the wok on medium heat and saute the blended ingredients until the oil separates and forms a layer in the surface.
  5. Add in the dried shrimp, sliced bitter gourd and sliced onions.
  6. Add in salt and cook for 4-5 minutes.

Simply the Best

We can be assured that we have successfully transported you to life in a kampung with this fried bitter gourd with chilli recipe. Fresh, sweet with a slight bitter aftertaste, this delicious and simple recipe can be your new salad crave after this.

If you are interested or want to learn more about simple, easy and delicious Malaysian Kampung food, reach out to us via our Instagram or Facebook pages and let us know what do you want to know next. We’d be happy to help you in any way. Who knows? It may become a series after this? Let us know and see what we can do to help you experience true kampung life here right in your own home!

Butterkicap Team

We're just a small group of friends who love food, culture and Malaysia. We saw the rise of mediocre food, deteriorating relationships and missed the good old days of Malaysia where food was good, homes were warmer and full of friends and family. So we rolled up our sleeves, and made Butterkicap with the hope that it will bring people and flavors home.

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