A member of the gourd family, Choko is low energy with just 85kJ per 100g (2/3 cup). 1/2 cup cooked choko is a serve, and is:
a source of vitamin C.
Common - all year
white - March to April
Choose firm, small and fresh green chokos that are free of brown spots or signs of sprouting.
Store choko carefully as it can bruise easily. Store whole, unwrapped, in the crisper of the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Cut the vegetable into segments, removing the seed core. Halve and stuff with meat, rice or other vegetables. Choko can also be sliced and added to soups and casseroles. Also known as vegetable pear, the versatile choko can even be baked or poached with fruits to make a dessert.
The choko vine that hangs off the traditional Aussie paling fence is actually native to Central America, Mexico and the West Indies. The Aztecs called it chayote and Francisco Hernandez, an early Spanish historian who lived in Mexico during the mid 16th century, recorded that the natives commonly included it in their diet. After the Spanish conquest the choko was taken to all tropical areas of the world. Early white settlers introduced choko to Australia.