Go go-ya ! an Okinawan super food

That’s the beast. Goya. Say go-ya. It’s the infamous bitter cucumber. I didn’t like it much the first time… That really depends how it’s prepared. Now it’s one of my favorites.

What is great about it ? Well, it has all the antioxidants of dark greens, watery texture and hydrating property of cucumbers, fiber and also thanks to bitterness it’s great to eat in hot weather.

A few years ago, that was not common in Osaka. That’s known as an Okinawan vegetable. But people got hooked to it, and more was proposed on markets, then they tried to grow it even in “continental” Japan. So we get it cheaply in season, available all year. The hot season is ending now… but I still get it a couple of times.

Red seeds indicate extreme maturation in sunlight. They are good, just eat them at once.

There are white ones too, with similar taste.

You simply need to discard seeds and scrub the white part.

Often sliced that way.

Preparation tips :

1. eat it raw, or only slightly cooked before it loses vivid colors : salads, steamed, stir-fry, etc
2. you can reduce bitterness by scrubbing well, slicing finely and salting then letting 20 minutes and rinsing

What to do with it ?

kefta spag’
tofu chigae
pasta avocanaise

panda salad

As a drink :
Shiri-shiri with goya
Another goya shiri shiri

dashi’t pickles
Go~ya champloo~ and Okinawan soba
white bean goya
chakin egg sushi and natsu chirashi
white goya in pesto rice

With tomato tsuyu and white goya.

Today’s zaru soba. It’s not different but not exactly the same. This is a ju-wari soba (100% buckwheat flour) that is light colored. There exist different shades of buckwheat.

I have replaced the water by juiced tomato in the tsuyu (stock of soy sauce and dry fish).

Toppings are rucola, dry fish flakes and white sesame.

So you dip in the cooled noodles in this cooled sauce and schlurp…

…when you’ve finished the noodles, you pour the boiling water of the noodles (that works only for ju-wari, as you see the broth is dense). You drink that hot soup to finish your meal.

I have found white go~ya (bitter cucumber) at the market. I had never seen them before. They are not very bitter, but watery, fresh and easy to eat.

Salad of goya, chick peas, hot green chili, sweet green chili, black rice vinegar, fragrant sesame oil.

(double serving of soba)
Cal 591 F8.6g C105.8g P24.3g

Other go~ya posts :

4 Okinawan style recipes

Go~ya champloo~ and Okinawan soba

Shiri-shiri with goya

Another goya shiri shiri

white bean goya

Goya and sushi :

Beat the heat chirashi

chakin egg sushi and natsu chirashi

White goya :
goya in pesto rice

Pesto yaki-gohan and edamame chicken-burger

Yaki-gohan is stir-fried rice. Today’s is green.

I was given lots of fresh basil. Arigatou…

“hamburgers” are now a part of Japanese cuisine, but in a modified form. I don’t mean the invasion of the streets by burger fast-food shops, which is not cuisine.
There are “hand-made” Japanese burgers, not in sands, but served on a plate, usually not with fries, but with veggies, and white rice. Meat is one ingredient among others, often minoritary. They always add veggies. And they often cover with heavy sauces like old-fashioned sauce espagnole (brown sauce) we had in France 100 years ago -when some Japanese went to get the recipes. Such sauces never were my cup of tea.
There are also tofu burger (not my fav’) and chicken burgers. Another style.

This chicken burger is simply minced chicken, spices (coriander seeds, nutmeg, turmeric, salt) and a few raw edamame. Pan-fried.

Brown rice (genmai) mixed with mochigome (sticky rice). Onion, garlic, broccoli stalks are stir-fried in olive oil. Rice is added. Then after cooking, basil basic pesto (basil, garlic, olive), and white goya. Plus fresh basil.

White goya (bitter squash, bitter cucumber, nigauri) is prepared like the green one. I cut open, scrub t the white center and seeds with a spoon, rince, slice, salt, let 20 minutes, rinse.

(double serving of rice)
Cal 566.8 F13.9g C88.0g P22.4g

Other pesto posts :

Le cake aux feves et pesto

rucola pesto with fresh pasta

Tale of 2 aubergines

Refreshing trio

A la soupe ! Au pistou.

Je vous presente Suribashi – My friend Suribashi