The lovely flower above, the start of a Hechima below
Oh! Just went to Wiki. This is Luffa Cylindrica, aka Loofa. You know, that thing you can use to scrub with in the shower! Ah ha! I probably should have looked it up first. Consider this liveblogging, then--those oohs and Ah Ha's are real (meaning, I really do get all excited about stuff like this. As does my mom:))
Later that day... my oldest comes home from school, see these photos and insists that his class (4th grade) is growing this stuff at school. Really? Are you sure, honey? Usually you guys grow some kind of flower or vegetable (last year was okra), and I'm not so sure you can eat this...this...thingumbob. He insisted that the flower was the same. Hmmm--I was pretty sure they weren't growing Hechima at school. But what exactly were they growing? What else could they grow that Koshi would mix it up with Hechima? Ahhhh--honey, is the vegetable you're growing at school green and bumpy? Yes! Got it--it's Goya. The bitter-but-edible cucumber-like vegetable, not the spanish artist. But, well, here's why he was confused:
If I end up cooking with it, I'll post the recipie:))
I stopped by school the other morning to see how the 4th graders' Goya was coming along--
Wiki page on Bitter Melon has some interesting info on medicinal uses for Goya, and several pics of other phenotypes. I picked up some sauce at the store to cook it with pork, onion and shimeji. Maybe I'll use egg, too, like they do in Okinawa, where it is said that eating Goya increases lifespan (even longer, it seems, than the Japanese generally).
Mata asobou, ne!