|Edible bamboo shoots|
|Kanji||竹の子 or 筍|
Harvested speciesShoots of several species of bamboo are harvested for consumption:
- Phyllostachys edulis (孟宗竹, 江南竹): Produces very large shoots up to 2.5 kilos. The shoots of this species are referred with different names depending on when they are harvested
- Winter shoots (冬筍, 鞭筍): Smaller in size up to 1 kg in weigh per harvested shoot. The flesh is tender and palatable and commercially quite important and harvested in November and December in Taiwan.
- Mao shoots (毛竹筍): Larger in size, but due to its toughness and bitter taste, it is generally used to make dried bamboo shoots. Harvested between March and May in Taiwan.
- Phyllostachys bambusoides (桂竹): Produces shoots that are slender and long with firm flesh. Commonly consumed fresh or made into dried bamboo shoots
- Dendrocalamus latiflorus (麻竹): Produces shoots that are large with flesh that is fiberous and hard. As such, they are suitable mainly for canning and drying.
- Bambusa oldhamii (綠竹): Produces valuable shoots that are large with tender and fragrant flesh. They are usually sold fresh and in season between late spring and early fall. Their availability depend on local climate. These shoot are also available in cans when not in season.
- Bambusa odashimae (烏腳綠竹): Considered similar to B. oldhamii, but highly prized due to its crisp flesh similar to Asian pears. Produced mainly in Taitung and Hualian and consumed fresh.
Local namesBamboo shoot tips are called salad (竹笋尖) or simply sǔn jiān (笋尖) in Chinese, although they are mostly referred to as just sǔn (笋). This sounds similar in Korean juk sun (죽순), a commonly used form although the native word daenamu ssak (대나무싹) is present. In Vietnamese bamboo shoots are called măng and in Japanese as take no ko (竹の子 or 筍). In Assam, they are referred to as gaz and in Nepal as tama (Nepali: तामा). In western orissa region of India people call it Kardi and it is the most famous dish there.In Jharkhand they are known as sandhna. In Indonesian they are known as rebung. In the Philippines they are most popularly known as labong or tambo. In Mizoram (India), locals name it as mautuai (mau means bamboo and tuai implies young).Bamboo shoots are eaten in Goa during the monsoon season and are commonly known as Kill (Konkani:किल्ल)
Regional usesIn Indonesia, they are sliced thinly to be boiled with coconut milk and spices to make a dish named gulai rebung. Other recipes using bamboo shoots are sayur lodeh (mixed vegetables in coconut milk) and lun pia (sometimes written lumpia: fried wrapped bamboo shoots with vegetables). Note that the shoots of some species contain cyanide that need to be leached or boiled out before they can be eaten safely. Slicing the bamboo shoots thinly assists in this leaching.
Japan, China and Taiwan the giant timber bamboo Bambusa oldhamii is harvested in spring or early summer. The bamboo has a very acrid flavor and should be sliced thin and boiled in a large volume of water several times. The sliced bamboo is edible after boiling. B. oldhamii is more widely known as a non-invasive landscaping bamboo.
Pickled bamboo, used as a condiment, may also be made from the pith of the young shoots.
In Assam, India, bamboo shoots are part of the traditional cuisine. It is called khorisa and bah gaj in Assamese.
In the Diyun region of Arunachal Pradesh, the Chakma people call it bashchuri. The fermented version is called medukkeye which is often served fried with pork. The bamboo shoots can also be fermented and stored with vinegar.
In Jharkhand, India they are used in curries, and commonly used as a pickle.
In Nagaland (India), bamboo shoot is both cooked and eaten as a fresh food item and fermented for a variety of culinary uses. Fermented bamboo shoot is commonly known as 'bas tinga'. Cooking pork with a generous portion of fermented bamboo shoot is very popular in Naga cuisine.
In Manipur (India), it is known as u-soi. It is also fermented and preserved which is called soibum. It is used in a wide variety of dishes – among which are iromba, ooti and kangshu ar eto.
In Western Orissa or the Kosal region of India, it is a common ingredient. Since this region is dominated by the tribal population, bamboo shoots (or "kardi" as it is known), is believed to have been in use for hundred of years. In this region, "kardi achar" (pickled bamboo shoots) and "kardi baja" (fried bamboo shoot strands)are also popular.
In Nepal, they are used in dishes, which have been well-known in Nepal for centuries. A popular dish is tama (fermented), with आलु (potato), बोडी (beans). An old popular song in Nepali depicts tama as "आलु बोडी तरकारी तामालाई मन पर्ने हाम्रो आमा लाइ" which means, "my mother loves vegetable of recipe containing potato, beans, and tama".
In Vietnamese cuisine, shredded bamboo shoots are used alone or with other vegetable in many stir-fried vegetable dishes. It may also be used as the sole vegetable ingredient in pork chop soup.
In Philippine cuisine, they are called "labong". Two most popular dish for this is the "ginataang labong" (labong with coconut milk and chilies) and "dinengdeng na labong" (labong in fish bagoong with string beans, saluyot, and tinapa).
The bamboo shoots are used as a special dish during the monsoons(due to seasonal availability) in Coorg(Kodagu) district, Karnataka, India. It is commonly known as kanile in the local language. It is usually sliced and soaked in water for 2 to 3 days, where the water is drained and replenished with fresh water each day to extricate and remove toxins. It is also used as pickle. It is used as a delicacy by all communities in Coorg.
In Uganda, bamboo shoots are called maleya or kamaleya among the Lumasaba tribe along Mt Elgon region in Uganda. Generally, they are called malewa by the rest of Ugandans. Since it is a seasonal crop, it is harvested once a year and preserved by smoking then cooked by soaking. It is then washed, sliced and then boiled. It is eaten in ground nut sauce.