Fuzzy Hairy Melon with Chicken & Mushrooms 金针菇鸡肉虾皮毛瓜

Similar to chayote and the other melons and gourds, Hairy Gourd (a.k.a Jointed Gourd 节瓜) - most often used in Asian/Chinese cooking - is an ingredient that is often consumed in summer, with benefits of alleviating inner body heat and detoxification.

Unlike winter melon 冬瓜 which is considered "cooling" (yin) and perhaps too "cooling" for the chilly fall/winter months, hairy melon is relatively "neutral" - often recommended by Chinese physicians if one cannot take too much "cooling" food. That also means hairy melon can be consumed even when summer is past, and when autumn falls in.

Hairy gourd has mild sweet and succulent flesh, good for making soups, quick-stews and stir-fries.

Hairy Melon with Krill, Mushrooms and Chicken 虾皮鸡肉毛瓜
1 medium-large fuzzy (hairy) melon, peeled, some (but not all) of the seeds removed, thinly sliced
1tbsp dried shrimps or krill
1 shallot, thinly sliced
3 cloves garlic, finely minced
Some enoki mushrooms
1/4lb organic ground chicken with splash of Chinese cooking wine/Japanese sake
1tsp organic light soy sauce
Pinch of salt and ground white pepper

Directions: Saute shallot, krill, garlic, then ground chicken, soy sauce, ground white pepper, splash of cooking wine, 2 tbsp of water to moisten and break up the chicken while frying. Add the melon, give it a good stir, add salt, and a little water to partially submerge the mixture. Cover the pot and cook at medium-high heat for about 5-8minutes till mixture comes to a boil, turn down heat to low-medium and simmer for about 2-3 minutes, till melon is cooked

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