Also known as: Chuw Chuw, Seemai Kathirikai, Chayote
Description: Chow Chow is roughly pear-shaped, with a thin, green skin fused with the green to white flesh, and a single, large, flattened pit. The flesh has a fairly bland taste, and a texture is described as a cross between a potato and a cucumber. The seed has a nutty flavor and may be eaten as part of the fruit. Chow Chow is a very typical South Indian and more a Tamil Brahmin vegetable and is used in different varieties of curries.
Commonly used in: In Tamil Brahmin cooking the vegetable is most often steamed and seasoned with mustard seeds, urad dal and curry leaves. These basic ingredients bring out the flavors and texture of the vegetable, making it nutritious and delicious. It is also used in cooking different curries especially with meat, sambar, curd curry, kootu, side dishes, and raw salads.
Health benefit: Both fruit and seed are rich in amino acids and vitamin C. The leaves and fruit have diuretic, cardiovascular and anti-inflammatory properties, and a tea made from the leaves has been used in the treatment of arteriosclerosis and hypertension, and to dissolve kidney stones.