10 March 2013

Loofah Squash

I grew up in a super Filipino cooking family and we ate loofah (kabatiti in Filipino) at least once a week. I did not care for it UNTIL I had to learn to eat healthy and cook for my own household. That sums the reason behind my love for it, I guess.

Loofah or luffa, lufa, patola, kabatiti, or loofah squash carries many health benefits plus very low in calories. It is commonly grown and used in Africa and Asia. Some of the health benefits includes:

  • Unripe loofah is a good source of calcium, iron, and excellent source of phosphorus, and fair amount of vitamin B. 
  • Oil produced from the seeds can help cure irritant skin.
Click here for a list of the many benefits of this awesome vegetable. 

The most common recipes I found online is to stir fry it with different vegetables and add a few salt. But growing up to endless meal with this vegetable, I have picked up a few from my own mother and grandmother. 

Loofah & Pumpkin:
Ingredients - 
  • 3 cups loofah
  • 2 cups pumpkin
  • 1 cup yellow onion
  • 2 clove garlic
  • fish sauce (patis)
  • salt and pepper for taste
Direction - 
  1. Peel and cut loofah in circles and pumpkin into cubes.
  2. Heat pan to medium.
  3. Saute garlic and onion with a tablespoon cooking oil. 
  4. Saute for about 3-5 minutes.
  5. Add pumpkin and loofah, add 1/2 cup water.
  6. Cover and let simmer for about 15-20 minutes.
  7. Add water as needed. Add fish sauce, salt, and pepper to taste. 
  8. Serve over hot rice. 
Loofah & Pork:
Ingredients - 
  • 1/2 pound pork belly 
  • 1 cup tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup yellow onion
  • 2 gloves garlic
  • salt and pepper for taste
  1. Heat pan to medium.
  2. Cut loofah. Cut pork into small cubes about 1/2".
  3. Saute onion, garlic, tomatoes, and pork. 
  4. Add 1 cup water, cover and let simmer.
  5. Cook until pork is cooked through (brown in color with clear juices).
  6. Add loofah, salt, and pepper. Cover and let simmer for 5-10 minutes until loofah is cooked.
  7. Serve on hot rice. 
There are many ways you can cook loofah and even as a vegan meal. Cook loofah by itself with onion, garlic, salt, pepper, and tomatoes. It is a fast meal, filling, and low in calories. You can fill yourself up with 3 cups of loofah and only consume about 50-100 calories with other vegetable ingredients. 

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