Photo Credit: Thadah Wah
Burmese call this green chin baung ywet, but it is known in English as roselle, a variety of hibiscus. These greens are popular for their sour, lemony flavor and their positive effect on blood pressure.
STORAGE: Store in an open bag in the crisper drawer of your fridge. Eat within a week.
RECIPE: Chin baung kyaw (fried roselle leaves with bamboo shoots)
Tips: the roselle leaves cook down significantly, so you need a lot of them. Also, it's okay to reduce or leave out the shrimp paste. The flavor is too much for some and you can replace some of it with the fish sauce. You can leave both out to make this dish fully vegetarian.
Toast the shrimp paste for a minute or two in a hot wok. Remove and mix with one tablespoon hot water. Soak the dried shrimp in warm water for about 15 minutes. Drain and dry, then put them through a food processor until roughly crumbled. If you have a mortar and pestle, pound the chiles and garlic to paste. If not, puree them in a food processor with the onion. Turn the wok to high, and when it begins to smoke add the oil. Add the onion-garlic-chile paste and stir-fry for a minute or two. Add the dried shrimp, shrimp paste, and roselle leaves and stir-fry until wilted. Season with fish sauce and take off the heat. Stir in cilantro and serve with rice.
RECIPE: Roselle, Potato, & Lemongrass Soup - TTCF Farmer Tri Sa's simple and delicious summer soup recipe.
Pull the roselle leaves off their stem and chop them. Chop the onion. Cut potatoes into dice.
Prepare the lemongrass: Peel off the outermost layers of the lemongrass and cut off the top portion of the stalk. Save these pieces to add to stock or to steep in boiling water for a tea. The remaining core of the stalk should be whitish and fragrant. Chop this up.
In a pot, heat olive oil over medium heat and add the onion and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tender. Add roselle greens and stir until wilted.
Meanwhile, in a separate pot, boil about 4 cups of well-salted water or broth and toss in the chopped potatoes. Next add the lemongrass to the water or broth. Once the potatoes are fork tender, take the soup off the heat and add the cooked roselle and onion and torn lemon basil (if using). Stir and salt to taste. Serve warm or chilled.