This leafy vegetable is chacterized by its longish narrow leaves and hollow stems. The Chinese name, 空心菜, literally means “hollow-centre vegetables”. It is a semi-aquatic tropical plant growing on water or moist soil.
They are popularly used in South East Asian cooking and one of the most common uses is to stir-fry the vegetables in either garlic or sambal chilli.
1) Scientific Name: Ipomoea aquatica
2) Chinese (both simplified and traditional): 空心菜 (means “hollow-centre vegetables”)
Mandarin Pinyin: kongxincai
3) English names: water spinach, water morning glory, water convolvulus, Chinese spinach, swamp cabbage
4) Local names: kangkung/kangkong, eng cai (Hokkein)
Health Benefits & Properties
According to this website, these vegetables are “good sources of iron, calcium, vitamins B and C and amino acids.”
Store vegetables in the crisper (vegetables) section of the fridge for about 1-2 days.
Look out for fresh and green leaves, with no signs of wetness or rot.
Check out NoobCook’s recipes with kangkong as a key ingredient.
Where to Purchase it in Singapore
- In wet markets and supermarkets.
References and Further Reading
- Wiki: Ipomoea aquatica
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