Loofa Recipes

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Muop Tau Hu Xao Recipe (Vietnamese Loofah and Tofu Stir-fry) Recipe

Mướp tàu hũ xào (loofah squash and tofu stir-fry) is a standard in Vietnamese vegetarian cuisine. Mướp (Vietnamese Loofah) is stir-fried along with tofu in black bean sauce and chili garlic sauce. The dish is seasoned with soy sauce and fried garlic. I also added straw mushrooms as a foil to the loofah. It's a very quick and easy dish I often make when I'm in a rush and I want a tasty, healthy meal.

Vietnamese loofah is a very common vegetable in Vietnam that is also used a lot in making canh ("soup" in Vietnamese) because of its natural sweetness and tender texture. You won't be disappointed by this, and if you like it, it’s easy to put together non-vegetarian versions.

 


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Bottle Gourd Recipe with Tofu Recipe

Bottle Gourd Recipe with Tofu

01.24.11 by Jackie

Trái bàu translates to calabash, bottle gourd, long melon or opo squash. It's a very common vegetable used in Vietnamese cuisine. The shape is cylindrical and the color is light green. It's best harvested while still young. It can be boiled, stir-fried or added to soups. The texture is very similar to zucchini; the flesh is very soft, spongy and tastes mildly sweet.

Whenever I look at calabash, it makes me think of a very nice lady named Trần and her lovely family. Last year, I got to meet Trần through PhamFatale.com. She read my article about the dragon fruit that I bought at the market and she kindly offered to give me dragon fruit trees her mother grows as a hobby. Trần's mom has magical hands and is a very talented gardener. While visiting their garden in San Jose, I noticed beautiful, giant calabash growing on vines hung over a trellis. I took a few home with me and they were the some of the best I’ve ever had. I’m going to try and to grow some of my own this year, and I’ll let you know how it goes.

For this particular version I made a quick vegetable stir-fry, using miso and honey. In honor of the upcoming Asian New Year, I'm determined to eat vegetarian for a week and at the same time, shed a few pounds.  This recipe was a great way to kick off my challenge.


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Vegetable Chana Dal Recipe Recipe

Vegetable Chana Dal Recipe

11.10.10 by Jackie

Turai chana dal is a dish that Baji, my husband Lulu's late grandmother, would make for the family. It's a healthy dish made of ridged gourd vegetable and lentils.

The ridged gourd vegetable, also known as turai or beerakaya, has the shape of an elongated starfruit squash. You can find it at any Indian grocery stores. This time, I made my own interpretation of her dish using a similar looking Vietnamese vegetable called mướp, which is a loofah gourd. Like the ridged gourd, mướp also belongs to the squash family. I've made this recipe with other vegetables such as zucchini and opo squash (trái bàu in Vietnamese) before and it’s come out well because once cooked, the texture of all these vegetables is quite similar. The flesh is soft and tender with a mild, natural sweetness.

No matter which vegetable you end up using, this dish will make a great veggie main course for your next meal.


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