What started out as a weird-sounding smoothie was actually quite good. I’m not even going to try to enumerate all the nutrients here. Just one look at the list of ingredients and you’ll get the picture.
Ampalaya (say ‘amph -pah-lah-yah’ ) means bitter melon. I have cooked it often as a stir fry dish from mom’s recipes. I’ve shared stories of horrific experiences about it from childhood, but with happy endings. I have cooked soups with ampalaya. I’ve even made salads with ampalaya from heirloom recipes as seen in award-winning cookbooks.
To start with, diabetes-afflicted folks have developed a following to the ampalaya. Those who suffer from hypertension have found the ampalaya (bitter melon) a healthy option, too.
The sweetness of the crisp apple, fruity langka (jackfruit) and thick honey neutralize the imagined bitterness. Later, the addition of the coconut milk and lime neutralize and sweeten the beverage even more. After the creamy coconut milk and wholesome yogurt are blended in, this drink emerges as a delectable beverage.
So before you go “yuck” over this, consider what nutrients your body is in for. It’s actually very good.
Ampalaya-Apple Shake with Coconut, Langka and Lime
- Food processor or blender
- 1 cup sliced ampalaya (bitter melon seeded, white membrane removed
- 1 whole fresh lime for the juice divided, use half for apple, rest for ampalaya
- 1 large Fuji apple peeled, sliced, seeded
- 1/2 cup sliced fresh langka (jackfruit cut into 1/2-inch pieces; or use canned, drain syrup
- 8 ounces coconut milk canned
- 1/2 cup vanilla yogurt
- 2 Tablespoons honey
- 3/4 cup crushed ice
- Wash, slice and seed half of a large ampalaya. This should make at least 1 cup of ampalaya slices. Sprinkle lime juice on slices and mix well.
- In a medium sized stockpot boil about 2 cups of water. Blanch the ampalaya slices in the briskly boiling water for about 2 minutes. Remove from water and drain. Let the ampalaya slices cool for a few minutes till ready to mix with other ingredients for juice.
- Peel and slice the apple. Sprinkle the slices with lime juice to avoid darkening.
- Slice the canned langka into slim-sized pieces about ¼ inch each.
- In a blender or food processor combine the ingredients: slices of ampalaya and apple, strips of langka (jackfruit), coconut milk, yogurt, honey, crushed ice. Blend or process for 1 to 2 minutes till diluted but still thick.
- Pour drink mixture into a tall beverage glass with a 12 oz. capacity. Garnish with strips of langka on the side. Serve cold or chilled.
- Cook’s comments: To make juice, smoothies or shakes I use a regular blender or food processor. I do not own a juicer just yet. So while I’m deciding which brand to get, I find the blender or food processor works well for the simple techniques I use when concocting beverages like this one for my family.
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Notes on Nutrition: The nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and specific brands of ingredients used.
Did you like this recipe?I have more Filipino Instant Pot recipes in my newest cookbook Instant Filipino Recipes: My Mother’s Traditional Philippine Cooking in A Multicooker Pot by Elizabeth Ann Besa-Quirino. I also have more classic recipes inspired by my mother’s cooking in my popular cookbook: My Mother’s Philippine Recipes. If you’re learning how to cook Filipino food or a fan of Philippine cuisine, buy my cookbooks and books on Amazon.com sold worldwide in paperback and Kindle format.
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