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Las Pinas City, Metro Manila, Philippines


Friday, March 11, 2011


           Saluyot or Jute (Corchorus capsularis L.) is a favorite vegetable of the Ilokanos and thrives almost anywhere in the Philippines. It is also abundant in Asia, Africa and in tropical deserts and wet forest zones. It requires little care in cultivation, and can be grown year-round. I use cuttings to propagate it, some prefer seedlings.

Saluyot(Jute) has been grown for food since 6000 B.C. History has shown that saluyot (Jew mallow or malukhiyah) originated from Egypt and was widely believed to be the source of health and beauty among Egyptian royalties, including the famous Cleopatra.

According to the Department of Science and Technology( DOST), Philippines, 100 grams of saluyot contains an ample amount of Vitamin A, thiamine, niacin, riboflavin, ascorbic acid, phosphorous, iron, potassium, sodium and is also rich in fiber. This green leafy vegetable is rich in beta-carotene for good eyesight, iron for healthy red blood cells, calcium for strong bones and teeth, and vitamin C for smooth, clear skin, strong immune cells, and fast wound-healing. Vitamin C or ascorbic acid improves circulation and helps lower the risk of cataracts and other eye disorders. Eating saluyot regularly helps control blood pressure & cholesterol, and lowers the risk of asthma, cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Dried saluyot leaves can be made into a tea and is believed to cure headaches, dysentery, stomach aches and ulcers. Studies have also shown that saluyot can be used for anti-inflammatory treatment. Saluyot has also been connected with curing the chronic inflammation of the urinary bladder. The Philippine Department of Health advises the public to increase their intake of saluyot or Jute, malunggay and banana in order to build resistance against the threat of swine flu.

The most important benefit of the leaves is their high antioxidant property, primarily in the form of Vitamin E. Its high antioxidant property reduces the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines in the face and body. Thus, regular consumption of saluyot can make you appear young. These antioxidants combine with free radicals reduces the cause of problems like arthritis, hardening of arteries, heart and kidney ailments

INABRAO of the Ilocanos
The best saluyot dish I’ve ever tasted is the malukhiyah dish in Saudia Arabia. The leaves are pureed and mixed last when the chicken sautéed onion is done. It is best eaten with pita bread. The Ilocanos use saluyot in their preparation of dinengdeng and bulangbulang. Dried or fresh saluyot are also mixed with sautéed bamboo shoots and dried beans. It can be steamed and pureed, mixed with chicken, or prepared into soup like how the Japanese prepare it as molohiya. Some mixes it in sautéed mongo and in soups. It is slimy in character so some people dislike it.

elegant Jute bags
eco-friendly Jute bags
Samples of jute bags from google images made from some varieties of Jute plan. It can also be made into ropes, beautiful rags and decorative items.