Beef and bitter melon is a long standing combination, especially here in the Philippines. While I don’t mind eating bitter melon, some might so you can use zucchini here as well. Meanwhile, you can replace the beef with other meats.

Cooking for Donita Rose, who is now also a chef by trade, I knew I wanted to cook a dish that most chefs love, which is a spicy stew of some sort. This is a quick version of a Korean food favorite. It’s not quite the real thing, but it is just as comforting.

Ingredients (serves 2 - 3)

1 tube of Japanese soft tofu, whole
1 cup of dilis (small dried fish)
4 cups water
200 g kimchi, roughly chopped
200 g napa cabbage, cut into large pieces
200 g shrimp, peeled
2 large eggs
2 cloves garlic,minced
1 onion, minced
salt and red pepper powder (gochugaru) to taste
2 tbsps oil


  1. In a pot, combine dried fish and water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 5 minutes and then strain.
  2. In a sauce pot, saute onions and garlic in the oil until fragrant. Add in kimchi and saute for 2 minutes more.
  3. Pour in the dried fish broth. Season with salt and red pepper powder.
  4. Once boiling, add in napa cabbage and simmer for 5 minutes.
  5. Add in the shrimps and whole tofu piece. Break up tofu into large pieces as you mix.
  6. After 2 minutes, add in 2 eggs and stir well.
  7. Serve immediately with rice.