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Simple but delicious: stir fried pumpkin buds with garlic

Rau bi or pumpkin buds are a popular ingredient in many dishes in Vietnam but the best is Rau bi xao toi (stir fried with garlic), said Pham Tuan Hai, a former judge on Vietnam Master Chef.

Hai said he had been addicted to Rau Bi Xao Toi cooked by his grandmother since he was a child. “I still remember that my grandmother would often wake up early in the morning to go to our garden to cut the pumpkin buds and bring them home to carefully peel and cook with garlic.”

Simple but delicious, stir fried pumpkin buds, Rau bi, popular ingredient, Vietnam Master Chef, tasty dishes, rich in protein

Rau bi xao toi (stir fried pumpkin leaves with garlic), a specialty of Vietnam.

“When I was trying to help my grandmother, she explained the most difficult process was peeling the pumpkin buds. Only a few people can do it, including my mother,” Hai said.

“I will never forget that,” he said, adding that apart from stir fried with garlic, his grandmother also cooked well several other tasty dishes such as stir fried with beef, boiled pumpkin buds with boiled eggs and mussels which helped to reduce the summer heat.

Pham Hoa Nguyen, 58, a maths teacher from Hanoi’s Hai Ba Trung District, said: "I often buy organic veggies from a friend of mine. After cleaning and peeling the buds very carefully, I peel the garlic and crush it and fry it in oil in a pan before stirring in the pumpkin buds over a big flame with a little fish sauce.”

Nguyen said the buds should be stirred quickly for five minutes so the veggies don't turn yellow.

“You should squeeze a little lemon over the dish to make it more delicious,” she said, telling me a secret that the veggies should be parboiled before frying. "This makes them stay green and crispy. The dish is so enjoyable I can eat two plates at the same time,” Nguyen said.

Simple but delicious, stir fried pumpkin buds, Rau bi, popular ingredient, Vietnam Master Chef, tasty dishes, rich in protein

People peel pumpkin buds, the most difficult process before cooking.

Meanwhile, herbalist Nguyen Van Hoa of the Thai Binh Traditional Medicine Centre said rau bi and its flowers are not only used for cooking but also for treating ailments such as burns and coughs, and they support the cardiovascular system.

“The pumpkin’s flowers are considered the most nutritious part.

They are rich in protein, calcium, folic acid and other minerals. It particularly helps reduce tiredness and supports a good sleep,” Hoa said.

He warned, however, that people should not eat too much rau bi because it could cause harm to their livers.

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Source: VNS

 
Simple but delicious, stir fried pumpkin buds, Rau bi, popular ingredient, Vietnam Master Chef, tasty dishes, rich in protein
 
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