Bright eyes…

I  don’t know what they are called…

STP's stir-fried green leaves 1

…but this was not the first time that my missus had bought them from the market. I did ask her but she did not know either. All she could tell me was that they are reputed to be good for one’s eyes.

I tried googling but found nothing; I wonder if they are what they call malunggay in the Philippines. There seems to be some resemblance to the daun bumi hempedu that I take every day but these are in not in any way bitter at all.

For one thing, they are very cheap. For RM1.00, you can buy a whole lot but do not be too happy as it is really tedious to prepare considering that the leaves have to be plucked one by one and just because you will end up with a basketful of them, it does not mean you are going to have a whole lot to eat.

STP's stir-fried green leaves 2

I’ve cooked them with garlic and egg before – the same way that I would cook cangkuk manis…and I’ve also cooked them with belacan (dried prawn paste) and on both occasions, we found the end results very palatable and we wouldn’t mind having them again.

This time around, I stir-fried them with a bit of finely-chopped garlic, some prawns, sliced chillies and half a teaspoon of ikan bilis (anchovies) stock…

STP's stir-fried green leaves 3

I did not wait till the leaves were very well-cooked in which case they would look like cangkuk manis, so there was still quite a substantial amount left to be served. That is the problem with these leaves. You may start off with a whole lot of them but after cooking, there will only be a little bit left…

STP's stir-fried green leaves 4

I wonder if anybody knows what these are called and whether anybody has cooked them before. Come, let’s share what you have with everybody…

Author: suituapui

Ancient relic but very young at heart. Enjoys food and cooking...and travelling and being with friends.

21 thoughts on “Bright eyes…”

  1. Can smell the fried belacan smell here!!! Oooops need to buy kitchen fan before I can smoke my apartment with all delicacies from South East Asia…my house-mate is from Thai. So we can have Tom Nyam for the whole winter!!! Tom nyam during X-mas will be nice…

    LOL!!! I remember how I used to cook curry in the UK and the English kids walking past the house would go ooo-ing with pleasure…but whenever I cooked something with belacan, they would go spitting and puking away…. Hahahahaha!!! 😉

  2. Hi! If I remember right it doesn’t look like malunggay. Malunggay has small round leaves and not like that. At first glance it resembles a type of chili leaves we use for cooking back there.

    Yup…it’s not malunggay. I looked at the photo – they are quite different. You mean curry leaves? Ya…the shape is certainly quite similar to curry leaves but it doesn’t have the strong smell…and I hear curry leaves also have a lot of health benefits.

  3. Hi! If I remember right it doesn’t look like malunggay. Malunggay has small round leaves and not like that. At first glance it resembles a type of chili leaves we use for cooking back there.

    Oops…duplicate comment. Never mind, the more the merrier… Hehehehehe!!! 😉

  4. Never tasted this before.. can make soup with that or not?

    Ah! You’re Cantonese speaking. I got this comment from a friend in Australia: “…if I’m not mistaken, it’s good for the eyes…the Cantonese call it “kau kee choi”…it’s certainly good for the’s meant for soup and then you crack some eggs in…it’s so lovely…” Does that ring any bell?

  5. i never seen this plant before, either in Sibu wet market or Bintulu pasar tamu.
    Will they be very chewy?

    Like cangkuk manis/mani chai or lakia chai…but a bit harder/not as soft unless you cook it longer.

  6. Oh yes, my mom loves to cook this as a soup dish. Very simple actually, just add some sliced lean pork and crack an egg or two and it’s done.

    Aha! Just like what my friend in Oz said. My missus used pork bones instead of lean meat…but I prefer it fried.

  7. Bright Eyes — what a beautiful song. Reminds me of my NZ days when it first came out. Are you sure these are edible leaves, not just some wild leaves they plucked in the jungle and decide to sell to unsuspecting cityfolks? Ok just kidding. But cangkuk manis with garlic and egg, that’s the best.

    That’s Art Garfunkel’s song from the animated movie “Watership Down”. Never watched the movie but my daughter did and she said it was nice – about rabbits… Ya…true-blue Foochow favourite – char la-kiang chai… LOL!!! 😉

  8. I will tell you that it is not malunggay but Ayie beat me to it.

    Yeah…it somewhat looked like chili leaves. Does the plant have chili fruits? If yes, maybe that plant is what we call as “siling labuyo” here in the Philippines.

    Ya, I can see from the photo that it isn’t. I don’t think it’s chilli either but I’ve never seen the whole plant though – just the way it is sold at the market – all stalks. Maybe I’ll try and google “siling labuyo” and see…

    P.S. Oh no! That’s what we call cili padi – small chillies but very very hot!

    1. ^_^ Oooops…wrong suggestion. So, siling labuyo here is cili padi there. My father loves that chili in adding spicy flavor to vinegar dips, all kinds of dips, and all kind of broth.

      That sili is best to place in a very hot and spicy food Bicol Express.

      My missus will have a constant supply of those chillies and must eat them with anything at every meal – she said without the chillies, no appetite the eat. I said her taste buds all retarded already, caused by all that spiciness. LOL!!! 😀

  9. Yup, it is called ‘ kow kee choi ‘ good for the eyes. Looks delicious fried with shrimps. You really can cook….:p that dish looks great 🙂

    But I think it was nicer with belacan…but then again, I think I’d prefer anything with belacan – the kampung boy in me. 😉

  10. I know what it’s called. *nods* It’s called sayur. Hahahahaha… aiyo… all these leafy greens, they all looks the same to me. Tarak tau what it’s actually called la… 😛

    I know the names of the conventional ones…but these days, all kinds of new one with Chinese names – all I dunno one…and some, not really that nice. Might as well stick to the ones we like…

  11. this vege dish looked familiar, i think i have tasted it before but just couldn’t recalled what it is called. You mean it’s good for the eyes?!! really?!!

    That’s what everybody says…but I don’t have any problems with my eyesight even at my age – well, not much. 😀

  12. I also never see this or tasted it before… hrm, how does it taste har?!

    Keep well and have a great week!

    Tastes good. Nicer than many other veg but if compared to cangkuk/sayur manis, I think cangkuk manis is better as it is sweeter.

  13. it tastes a bit bitter and the stems have thorns.Looks a bit like a type of leaves that i make soup. ..That daun cantonese is calle “Kau Kei”.

    Yup…I think the general consensus is that THAT is the vegetable – my friends were also discussing it on Facebook and it seems that ours here do not have the thorns…but it’s the same vegetable, normally cooked as soup with egg.

  14. Just read your post. The Cantonese call it the ‘kau kei’ choy.They are the leaves of the Lycium babarum or Lycium chinense, one of 2 species of plant from which gojiberries (wolfberries) are harvested.

    Hope this info didnt come too late.

    Oh? They’re from the plant where they get those goji or wolfberries? No wonder they’re good for the eyes – same as those berries. Thanks for the info.

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