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My cookbook, KANSHA: Celebrating Japan's Vegan & Vegetarian Traditions (Ten Speed Press, 2010) provides a solid foundation to the principles and practice of kansha in the kitchen and at table. This workshop page enables me to guide you further.  ENJOY! 

KANSHAworkshop TWENTY-TWO

Kampyō (Sun-Dried Gourd Ribbons) 干瓢



Kampyō is most often sold in cellophane bags. Some packages will contain very long (several yard) strips, others will have short (6-inch) pieces. If possible, buy long, uncut gourd ribbons. That way you will have more options when cooking.

Whatever the length,be sure to buy UN-BLEACHED naturally sun-dried gourd so you can enjoy the broth that is produced when soaking the ribbons in water to re-hydrate them. Adding a piece of kombu (kelp) to the soaking water will intensify the (naturally) sweet flavor profile of the gourd. Use this broth in lieu of stock in any recipe.

Like all kambutsu (dried foods), dried gourd should be stored in a closed container on a cool, dark shelf. It
will keep for months, though it may darken from a pale straw color to deeper golden tone.
Kampyō is used to tie up various edible packages such as the tōfu-stuffed kale rolls above, left. Kampyō is also simmered in a sweet soy-broth and included in sushi rolls like the nori maki above, right.
KAMPYŌ no HARI HARI-ZUKÉ

SOUR & SPICY DRIED GOURD PICKLES

干瓢のハリハリ漬け

Another delicious way to use kampyō is to make sour-and-spicy pickles.

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I welcome your feedback -- especially captioned photos with a brief description of your kitchen sessions when you try making the recipes above. Those interested in offering feedback, please download a set of guidelines for submitting and displaying your work.To further teaching goals, I may post some of the feedback to this site, adding my commentary.