Here in Louisiana we call this gourd the mirliton. In its native Mexico, it's the chayote. They call it "chow chow" in South India. I suppose I'll call it the chayote and get on with this.
I picked up the chayote at the produce stand this evening and came home to make this lovely, light curry. Authentic? Possibly not. But it served my purposes of being light and receptive to flavor (of which I tossed plenty into the pot.)
Definitely planning to explore more with this many-monikered fruit. For now, we have this take on a curry.
Chayote ("Chow Chow") Curry
Yield: 2 servings
1 chayote, chopped into 1-inch pieces
1 yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons coconut oil
1/2 teaspoon brown mustard seeds
2 candlenuts (Indian walnuts)
2 cardamom pods, cracked
1/2 tablespoon turmeric
1 tablespoon curry powder
1 teaspoon cumin
Cooked rice (for serving)
Note: The chili in the picture is just used as a color prop, but if you'd like a little more heat, feel free to add some!
1. In a large saucepan or Dutch oven, heat coconut oil over medium high. Add mustard seeds and cook until they begin to crackle.
2. Add candlenuts and cardamom pods and cook for another three minutes. Stir in onions and cook, stirring frequently, until golden-brown.
3. Now add remaining spices and chopped chayote. Cook covered, stirring every few minutes and adding water to keep the chayote from burning.
4. Once chayote is golden and softened, remove from heat, extract candlenuts and cardamom pods, and serve over rice.