This vegetable is excellent for balancing liver function for most people. It helps the body process food for maximum nutrition and assimilation.
Lauki squash resembles yellow crook-neck squash in shape but is light green in color, and sometimes much larger and thicker. It grows up to 2 feet long in some areas, and starts anywhere from 10 inches in length. It has a smooth surface like eggplant, but not as shiny. The best quality squash is firm, light and even in color without many blemishes.
Lauki is sold by many names. Ask for Lauki, or Loki, in your local Indian or Asian food store. Ask for Kakunsa where Italian foods are sold. Ask for Fuzzy Squash in Canada. And you can special order it in many U.S. food stores as White Pumpkin, Benares Pumpkin, or Long White Gourd. These are the names for the sweet variety. Avoid the bitter variety, called Bitter Gourd. The scientific names are Lagenaria vulgaris or Cucurbita.
1 whole, fresh, Lauki squash (about ten inches long)
Ghee (clarified butter)
1 ½ tsp whole cumin seeds
½ tsp turmeric
Wash and peel squash. Chop into small cubes, about 1 ½ inches in size.
Steam until slightly soft, like yellow squash, usually about 15 minutes, or place in frying pan or wok, with one teaspoon of Ghee and sauté on medium heat until slightly soft and moist.
Melt one tablespoon of Ghee in a large frying pan until it turns clear. Mix whole cumin seeds and turmeric into the Ghee. Stir until the aromas are released.
Add the steamed or cooked Lauki and evenly coat it with the Ghee-spice mixture. Serve immediately, not too hot.
Cooked, whole grains complement Lauki for a delicious meal. Basmati rice is especially good for helping balance liver function.
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