In spring I have put into soil all 4 seeds and threw away the pack, where seeds were, so when neighbours were coming to watch what’s growing in my garden and were asking what was that, I couldn’t answer.
It was impossible not to ask. Only two seeds gave sprouts, but day after day they became bigger and occupied more and more territory. In the end of July all place 3 meters wide and 5 meters long was full of big green leaves with few blossoms looking above them. Sprouts wanted to go more wide, but I thought it was enough and was cutting each sprout, which was going outside territory.
Blossoms were white, looked like made of very thin matherial, and all were “males” – they didn’t have any promisses of harvest, only a pride.
Finnaly in the end of August first gourds appeared. They looked like green sausages, or like calm lazy snakes.
Finnaly I decided I must know, what is growing in my garden, so I was googling until I found out – it was Lagenaria siceraria!
Some interesting fact about the gourd – you don’t necessary have to take the whole 3 meters long “snake” from the garden, if you need only 20 centimeters. Cut from the gourd as much, as you need, and the rest leave to grow.
Ah, sounds like a dream of meat eaters – they would like not to kill the whole pig, if they only want few bites of pig ear (is that considered as food in your country?)…
Lagenaria tastes a bit like zucchini, so I believe all recipes for zucchini could be used, though I haven’t tried all, just few. Then invented this one – with rice and yellow lentils (because finaly I have got yellow ones!)
In September, when my zucchinies are too matured and hardskinned, lagenaria is very nicely tender.
1 cup of Basmati rice
2 tablespoons of yellow lentils
100 g of clarified butter (or olive oil)
2 cloves garlic
pinch of cumin
a pinch of sweet pepper
a piece of tender lagenaria – when cut into cubes would be about a cup
3 dried dates
Soak rice and lentils at least 20 minutes.
Fry the spices and chopped onion on butter or oil, don’t use all, just as much as necessary for frying till onion becomes transparent, add chopped garlic and carrots sliced into long sticks. After a few minutes of cooking add lagenaria, chopped into small cubes. If the skin is not tender – peel. Stir in butter. Add the rice and lentils, add salt, pour water a bit above the rice, add chopped dates, and cook about 15 minutes. When they are almost done, turn off the fire, put more butter (you will never spoil rice with butter),cover a lid and leave for 10 minutes.
Don’t forget the name of the gourd – it’s lagenaria!
I am ready to announce the whole world about my lagenaria, as I am taking part in the worldwide event GROW YOUR OWN – 45