Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Mirliton: That’s Good Eatin’, Yeah!

On the vine.
They must be recovering nicely to find them this far north. This is a Mirliton - a backyard perennial and staple of the southern Louisiana diet for years. They grew wild in the woods behind my family home in NOLA and they are delicious eating. 

Mirliton (also known as Chayote) are a succulent squash-like vegetable with an avocado-like single pit, and can be served in many ways; from salads to stuffed, to main course casseroles or side dishes. They are extremely good when pickled.  It was thought that they were practically extinct in the aftermath of Katrina and Rita, but since they grow like weeds, they eventually got a grip somewhere and are coming back strong.

I can’t believe I found them at a local supermarket, unfortunately not the one I frequent most often. I just happened to be in this store because it’s the best place to find elephant garlic, which I needed for a dish. These were wrapped individually and pampered for their journey north. That’s as it should be

Stuffed with Shrimp & Crab.
Anyway, these mirliton are smaller than I remember them, so I bought 3 since I don’t remember if they handle freezing well.  I will certainly make good use of these babies. This is another one of those times that I get angry about the loss of my sense of taste. 

I have no family recipes to fall back on. Well, who’d have thought I’d find a mirliton this far north, in the first place.  Fortunately, there are tons of recipes online and some pretty close to what I remember my grandmother making when I was a kid.

Feels like I’m closer to heaven this evening.

And so it goes.



  1. I have never heard of this veggie. now if only I could get someone to cook bananas foster and beignets in my kitchen...


  2. I know that they MUST be good, especially since Tchaikovsky wrote a dance for them in 'The Nutcracker'! ;-)

    1. Too bad it wasn't about the vegetable. The dance goes by another name, or two, as I remember. But, it's a nice thought that ol Peter spent some time in New Orleans.

    2. 'Dance of the Reeds/ Flutes', I think. (Can't be bothered to look it up.)

    3. Oh, Pyotr Ilyich, you mean? Didn't know that.


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