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Chinese Stuffed Fuzzy Melon (Mo Qua)


Fuzzy or hairy melon (also called Mo Qua) looks like a zucchini covered with baby fuzz. You'll find it at Asian markets, but author Stephen Wong notes that cucumbers can be substituted in a pinch.

Serves 2 to 4

Want to know what it looks like? Click on the link for a photo of fuzzy melon. Chinese Recipes  


  • 2 ounce/60 gram package of cellophane noodles
  • 2 mo qua or English cucumbers
  • Pork and Marinade:
  • 1/2 lb minced pork
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon minced ginger
  • 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
  • 1 egg white, slightly beaten
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
  • Sauce:
  • 1 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 1 cup pork or chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 4 large shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced


Cover cellophane noodles with hot water and soak for 10 minutes or until noodles are soft.  Drain well and chop coarsely.

Peel and cut mo qua crosswise into 1-inch/2.5 cm slices. Scoop out some seeds and pulp from centre of each slice to form bowl.

  Combine pork and marinade ingredients with half of cellophane noodles. Spoon meat mixture into mo quo "bowl" and press down gently to cover slice with small, smooth mound of mixture. Dip each stuffed piece of mo qua meat-side down into remaining cellophane noodles until well coated.

   Heat skillet over medium high heat and add sauce ingredients. Add stuffed mo qua slices squash-side down. Cover and braise for total of 15 minutes. After first 5 minutes of cooking, uncover and spoon sauce over meat. Cover and continue cooking. Repeat basting after another 5 minutes and add mushroom slices. Cook for 5 more minutes.

  Remove mo qua slices and arrange on a platter. Pour sauce over and serve. If sauce is too thin, thicken after removing the mo qua, then pour over stuffed squash. 

Each serving includes:  Calories 183, 22 g Carbohydrates, 16 g Protein, 4 g Fat, 1 g Saturated Fat, 36 mg Cholesterol, 3 g Fibre, 357 mg Sodium, 508 mg Potassium. An excellent source of thiamine. A good source of fibre, niacin, vitamin B-6 and zinc.

Reprinted with permission from ""HeartSmart Chinese Cooking" by Stephen Wong, one of the books in the Heart and Stroke Foundation's Heart Smart Library.

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