The much loved Seemebadanekayi in South Karnataka is known as Chayote Squash. Most of us in South Karnataka would have enjoyed Seemebadanekayi Palya with Saaru Anna.
Chayote Squash is also known by the adorable name Chow-Chow and by many other names all over the world. The botanical name is Sechium edule and belongs to Cucurbitaceae family. It is a native of Central America.
It is a vine and grows up to 12 meters with support. The leaves are green, heart-shaped leaves, around 10–25 cm wide with tendrils on the stem.
The male flowers bloom in clusters whereas, the female flower are solitary. The flowers are small and whitish in color. Female flowers, produce fruits.
The fruit is light green, elongated with deep ridges lengthwise. The surface is prickly and the flesh is pale green with a single seed placed at the widest part of the fruit.
Many varieties are grown, which are in various shapes, texture, and sizes. All parts of the plant are edible including the root. The fruit can be consumed either raw or cooked.
Chayote squash has high water content and dietary fiber. It is a good source of amino acids and vitamin C. As it is high in potassium and low in sodium it is an ideal vegetable for people with hyper tension. Traditional medicine uses the leaves and fruit to treat various ailments.
Recipes using Chayote Squash:
Seemebadanekayi Sippe Chutney / Chayote Squash Skin Chutney
Hasi Majjige Huli
Huli / Sambar