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Healthy Loofah Squash with Toasted Garlic Crowns

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Linda Anusasananan, Level 7
Linda Anusasananan
This squash recipe is simple, fresh, and great as an appetizer. It combines the strong flavors of toasted garlic and Loofah squash. The loofah (or luffa) squash has a unique flavor, which can be found under several names including Chinese okra, silk squash, sponge squash or sinqua. Learn to make this amazing Chinese soul food recipe along with the author of The Hakka Cookbook, Linda Lau Anusasananan. This is a Grokker Premium video that should definitely be watched and tried!

Cooking Recipe

1 large angled loofah squash (sinqua, silk squash) or 3 or 4 medium zucchini (12 to 16 oz. total)
Salt to taste
1 1/2 tbsp vegetable oil
3 tbsp evenly minced garlic
2 tbsp. chopped cilantro (optional)

Make Sure You Have: Steamer, wok or other pan with a steamer basket or rack.

1. Peel all the ridges and skin off the loofah (zucchini needs no peeling); discard ends. Cut squash crosswise into 3/4-inch thick rounds. Place the squash in a single layer, cut-side down, on a heatproof plate that will fit inside a steamer. Lightly sprinkle the slices with salt.

2. Set the dish on a rack over 2 to 4 inches boiling water in a steamer (at least 1 inch wider than dish) or wok (if bottom is round, place on a wok ring to stabilize). If you don't have a steamer large enough to accommodate a plate, steam squash without plate, on a rack with a steamer basket. Cover and steam over high heat until squash is tender when pierced, about 5 minutes for loofah, 10 minutes for zucchini. Watch the water level, adding more boiling water as needed.

3. Meanwhile, in a 6- to 8-inch frying pan over medium heat, add oil and garlic. Stir often until the garlic turns light gold, 2 to 3 minutes, taking care not to overcook. Remove from heat; garlic may continue to brown slightly.

4. When the squash is done, carefully remove dish from the steamer and drain off accumulated water. Then, transfer steamed squash to a serving plate, cut-sides up. Place a spoonful of garlic on top of each round. Sprinkle plate with cilantro, if desired. Add more salt to taste, if desired.


Chinese Garlic Squash


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