Soft vegetable cubes of Sayote (Chayote) Steamed in Butter, almost like squash, translucent and light green, thick-textured yet silky to the touch, was steamed then slathered in butter which melted right away on the whole dish. The steamy vapors from the vegetable, smelled of a garlic-buttery saltiness and was perfect with the aroma of boiled jasmine white rice which was waiting next to the platter.
Sayote steamed in butter has always been one of my favorite vegetables. My mom used to serve it to us often when I was a child. I remember how good its soft, buttered cubes tasted paired with a garlicky-vinegary adobo dish, Filipino style. Oh, this was always one of the best home cooked meals hands down.
Sayote (say ‘sa-yo-teh’ ) is the Filipino term for the chayote, the vegetable that’s botanically a fruit. It belongs to the same family as those of the squash. It grows in warmer climates, typically South America and in Mexico. It also grows abundantly in the Philippines.
Sayote was defined as a “mirliton pear, a light green, oval fruit that becomes soft and bland when cooked” by the late Professor Doreen G. Fernandez, pioneer food writer in her book “Sarap: Essays on Philippine Food”.
The Spanish term is “chayote” and it is shaped like a pear, has a tough, yet smooth light green outer skin. When peeled, the inside reveals an opaque lighter green thick flesh, with a white membrane that has tiny seeds embedded within. I just peel it, slice it with a large, sharp knife and remove the seeds. Once sliced and cubed, it is easy and quick to cook. When the sayote is cooked like a vegetable , it has a light, bland flavor, similar to the squash or gourd. When boiled, steamed or sauteed in onions and garlic, the flavors add an interesting dimension to the dish.
Sayote (Chayote) Steamed in Butter
- large skillet or wok
- 1 whole large sayote (chayote) peeled, seeded, cubed, about 1 1/4 cup
- 1 whole onion sliced thin
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper corns
- 1 teaspoon black pepper powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 Tablespoon butter or margarine
- 2 stalks scallions chopped,for garnish
- 1/3 cup water
- for serving: steamed rice
- In a small saucepan, put together the sayote ( chayote) cubes, water, onion, garlic, black pepper powder, pepper corns, salt. Cover and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes or till sayote cubes are soft.
- When the sayote (chayote) is fork-tender, while still hot, add the butter and mix well. The butter should melt within 1 minute in the hot bed of vegetables and spread all over.
- Serve warm with boiled jasmine white rice. Garnish with chopped scallions.
- Cook's Comments: If serving to little children, you can omit the black peppercorns and minimize the black pepper to just a sprinkle. I recall my own kids did not care for "those round black things" when they were little.
- Ingredient availability: The chayote is available in most Asian groceries or major supermarkets, in the ethnic vegetable aisle, almost year round.
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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.
Copyright Notice: Hello, Friends! Please DO NOT LIFT OR PLAGIARIZE my original recipe, stories, photos or videos. All the images and content on this blog are COPYRIGHT PROTECTED and owned by my media company Besa-Quirino LLC. This means BY LAW you are NOT allowed to copy, scrape, lift, frame, plagiarize or use my photos, essays, stories and recipe content on your websites, books, films, television shows, videos, without my permission. If you wish to republish this recipe or content on media outlets mentioned above, please ASK MY PERMISSION, or re-write it in your own words and link back to my blog AsianInAmericaMag.com to give proper attribution. It is the legal thing to do. Thank you. Email me at [email protected]