Chayo...who? Pronounced: chai-(like the tea)-o-tay. Chayote squash is my very favorite non-starchy squash! Well, it is techniqually a fruit, but so are tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and countless other fruits that we call vegetables. I dare you to Google that one! What is a fruit and what is a vegetable? Depends who you ask. The answer is not black and white, that much is clear. Many nuts, beans and grains are also fruits. However, in the nutrition/cooking world, we classify many of these fruits by how they are prepared, the role they play on your plate and thier nutrional value.
Nutritional Value of Chayote: 1 cup = 25 Calories and has 2 grams of fiber
Remember fiber is a good thing! And is just one of the reasons why our first nutritional challenge is to eat 5 handfuls of fruits/vegetables everyday. Many whole wheat slices of bread have over 100 calories with only 2-3 grams of fiber. That's only a 1/4 of fiber this little chayote provides per 100 calories! So you can see why can see why fruits/vegetables are our best shot when it comes to getting enough fiber in your diet.
Okay, so let's eat some chayote!
Oven Roasted: Just cut in half, spray with olive oil, cover and cook at 375 for about 40 min. This one is topped with queso fresco and makes a great snack.
Sometimes chayote is boiled. And I like the way it turns out when you boil it, but just make sure to use your chayote broth in soup, rice or quinoa, so you don't throw out those nutrients that are left behind in the water.
Here it is served with dinner: Pollo Pipian (see the Going Green recipe) and quinoa (red and white). Delicious!
Chayote is a must try, if you haven't already. Chime in...I would love to hear your thoughts!