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awapuhi-ko `oko`o torch ginger
by sharon mau
- Artist Notes
- Awapuhi-ko `oko`o Torch Ginger
Location: Growing wild and naturalized in the cloud forest of Ho’olawa (Twin Falls) Puohokamoa Valley Maui Hawai’i
“The torch ginger or wax flower (Etlingera elatior) is believed native to Sulawesi (Celebes) and Jawa, Indonesia (Java). The plant is now grown in many tropical locations both for the extravagant ‘flowers’ and for food. In Malaysia, it is called kantan. The peduncles (stems) of the inflorescence are chopped and added to laksa pots (various curries or soups made with rice noodles).
The spectacular inflorescence rises from the rhizome to a height of 60 centimeters (24 inches) to more than a meter (40 inches). The individual flowers will appear from between the pinecone-like scales above the waxy bracts. The leaves grow in ranks from separate stalks along the rhizome. The leafy stalks are evergreen and get 4.5 to 6 meters (15 to 20 feet) tall.
Etlingera elatior (Torch Ginger or Ginger Flower) is a species of herbaceous perennial plant. Botanical synonyms include Nicolaia elatior and Phaeomeria speciosa. The showy pink flowers are used in decorative arrangements while the flower buds are an important ingredient in the Nonya dish laksa. In North Sumtara, the flower buds are used for a dish called arsik ikan mas (Andaliman Peppercorn Spiced Carps) It is known in Indonesianas “bunga kecombrang ” or “honje”, Malay as bunga kantan and Thai as kaalaa. In Karo, it is known as asam cekala (asam meaning ‘sour’), and the flower buds, but more importantly the ripe seed pods, which are packed with small black seeds, are an essential ingredient of the Karo version of sayur asam, and are particularly suited to cooking fresh fish.”
1. Information Sources: Etlingera eliator
Plant of the Week
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More about sharon mau
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- hawaii, usa
- Artist Biography
Sharon Mau is a fine art photographer, journalist, visual communicator
and conceptual artist residing on the beautiful windward coast of the
tropical island of ihikapalaumaewa, more commonly known as Maui Hawaii -
Paradise on Earth - Island of Rainbows, specializing primarily in
beautiful tr ...
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