Yesterday, I bought a pack of three akebia fruits for 98 yen.
I decided to make akebi no niku zume (akebia rinds stuffed with meat) as part of supper tonight. I learned only yesterday that akebia rinds are edible (but bitter).
I had to cut each akebia fruit carefully so as not to damage the "contents".
These are the sweet innards of akebia. You put one in your mouth, have the sweet white substance, and spit out the black seeds.
I dusted the inside of each akebia rind half with katakuriko (potato starch), and
stuffed each with a mixture of:
300 g ground pork
1/2 naga negi, finely chopped
1/4 tsp salt
2 tbsp katakuriko
豚の挽き肉 300 g
I pan-fried them with a relatively large amount of oil. One recipe says that you have to fry with a large amount of oil to remove the bitterness.
Just as I had imagined, the purple color had gone...
The rest of the meat mixture was turned into small patties and baked in the toaster oven.
I also made potato salad. We also had inada (young yellowtail) sashimi and aji no nanban zuke. And, the leftover tonjiru (pork soup). I added some enoki to the tonjiru. We will have the niitaka nashi (pear) when my son comes home at around 8 o'clock.
The akebia rinds were much less bitter than I had anticipated.
Last year I was thinking about planting Akebia at the house walls but I hesitated, could not decide between Akebia and Campsis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Campsis). Campsis looks beautiful in full blossom. I did not know that the Akebia rind is edible. Makes it more and more interesting.
You had quite a feast today.
Kiki: If you plant three-leaf akebia, you can get kinome in spring!
See the third photo.
Hiroyuki-san, thank you for the post about Akebia fruit. I haven't heard about this type of fruit before. When I saw your first picture I thought it was a type of eggplant or purple mango .
Anonymous: Someone says that akebia rinds taste like bitter eggplant (laugh).
It looks like a fruit from a different planet! (Haha! I have also though at first that it was a different aubergine variety ;-) ). I have never even heard about it, not to mention seeing it. Filling the rind with ground meat sounds like a very creative idea.
Another item I will put on my list to taste during next stay in Japan! (Of course if it's in season when I come)
Sissi: Well, it's not something you will crave... For one thing, the pulp is only slightly sweet. For another, the rind is bitter...
Wow, my first time to see this kind of fruit... Does it taste as bitter as goya(bitter melon) or just slightly bitter like gnemon fruit? I'm a fan of bitter dishes anyway. haha
anon: I didn't find it as bitter as goya. Sorry, I'm not familiar with gnemon fruit.
Other dishes suggested for akebia rinds include stir-fries and kakiage (onion slices + green perilla + akebia rinds).
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