Any great cook will tell you that just as bamboo can be a useful, luxurious and healthy part of house and home, it can also be a tasty addition to many meals. In fact, you may not be surprised to find that many South Asian food fans swear by it!
As Asian cuisine continues to grow at an almost exponential rate in popularity (think high-end restaurants like Nobu, prevalent chains like PF Chang’s or popular shows like Iron Chef America and Japan) the availability of Asian ingredients also grows. No longer limited strictly to Asian supermarkets, bamboo shoots can now be found in your local supermarket’s canned vegetable or “ethnic” food section. And you will find variety as well. They also come in various sliced forms. They can be bought canned or fresh, whatever best suits your need.
Not unlike celery or radishes, bamboo’s relatively bland taste but crunchy and bristly texture allows it to be cooked into a variety of dishes, from broths to stir-frys to curries.
No matter how you slice it—bamboo shoots, that is—you will find a multitude of lovely dishes that beg for a bamboo ingredient.