The terrific looking still life of vegetables I wrote about the other day didnâ€™t last very longâ€¦ I cooked it for dinner that evening to pair up with the chili crabs. The heat and spice of the crabs were meant to be tempered by the coolness and sweetness of the coconut milk, squash and ginger. I arranged a portion of the dish in a hallowed out half coconut shell, up top, for photo reasons only, or if I owned a restaurant that needed that bizarre height that fancy shmancy places are wont to do. The recipe is really easy to do and a real crowd pleaser.
To make, peel some kalabasa (squash) and cut some sitaw (yard long beans) into two inch pieces. In a kawali, sautÃ© some large slices of ginger and onions in some vegetable oil. Add some garlic if you like. Then add some freshly made coconut milk and boil this for a few minutes until thickened. Then add the squash and cook for several minutes. Add the sitaw (beans), siling mahaba (long mild green chilies) and cook a few minutes longer then add prawns if using, season liberally with salt and pepper and if you want the ma-arte version, add squash blossoms for interest and as a garnish. Serve immediately and make sure you donâ€™t overcook this dish as the squash can get too soft. Actually, I like this dish by itself along with some brown rice but it also goes very well with spicy food. If you live abroad and only have access to canned coconut milk, this recipe works well with canned versions…just thin the milk a bit and adjust moisture levels as necessary.