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Ginisang Upo at Hipon

Ginisang Upo at Hipon (Sauteed Bottle Gourd and Shrimps) is a simple vegetable dish that my mother usually prepared for lunch or dinner. She usually had it served with fried tulingan (baby skipjack tuna). Bottle gourd was one of her favorite vegetables maybe because it is low in fat and cholesterol yet high in dietary fiber. It contains 96% water and is rich in iron and also has vitamins C and B complex.  It's rarely available here in Texas, so whenever I see some in Asian stores, I never fail to buy a piece or two.

Let me share with you how my mother used to cook bottle gourd. This is one of her simple, easy-to-cook recipes that I love cooking especially on Meatless Fridays.

Prep Time: 10 minutes                    Cook Time: ~20 minutes                       Servings: 4 

  • 1 medium-sized upo (bottle gourd), peeled, seeds and spongy interior removed and cut into approximately 1”x1’’ cubes
  • 1 big roma tomato, thinly sliced
  • 1 small-sized onion, thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 12 pcs. shrimps, peeled and deveined (set aside shrimp heads)
  • ½ cup shrimp juice
  • 2 Tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 Tbsp olive oil
  • salt and pepper

1. In a bowl, mash shrimp heads in ½ cup water. Using a strainer, separate juice from shrimp heads and set aside.
2. In a saucepan over medium heat, saute garlic in olive oil until light brown.
3. Add onions and tomatoes. Saute until softened, around 5 to 7 minutes.
4. Add upo. Saute for a minute. Pour in reserved shrimp juice and fish sauce. Cover and simmer until upo is cooked but not too soft, about 10-12 minutes.
5. Add shrimps. Sprinkle with pepper and salt to suit your taste. Simmer until shrimps turn pink.
6. Remove from heat. Serve with hot rice and fried fish.


  1. I will have to make this!

    I am following you (suelee1998) from the blog hop, you have a great site. Would you like to follow me back?
    thank you :)

  2. Any new way to cook shrimps is more than welcomed here! Love the combo of ingredients!

  3. Bitter gourd is big hit for its surely healthy, esp for my hubby's diabetics. Surely a recipe I will want to try out, what more with shrimps.

  4. Wow! Thanks for linking this with Friday Potluck -- as always your recipes inspire! :)

  5. Yum, another great looking dish! I love shrimp and this looks like a really unique way to fix it! Thanks for linking up!

  6. I love shrimp and your recipe looks so yummy as always :)

  7. I'm not a shrimp person, but I bet it would be good with chicken?
    New follower from Feed me Friday! Would love a follow back! Have a great weekend!

  8. Lovely recipe! Tina, I have an award for you. You can collect it here:
    Hugs! :-)

  9. looks like great recipe. you made bottle gourd a star by adding those shrimps :)

  10. I don't think I have ever cooked or eaten upo. So you taught me something new today. I'll have to look out for it when I go vegetable shopping next time. Your dish looks lovely.

  11. Hi! Just found you through a blog hop and now following, i hope you can follow back also! I'd appreciate it so much :-)
    xoxo from NYC!


  12. well bitter gourd isn't my favorite thing.. but with prawns it looks good :)

  13. Thanks for all the wonderful comments everyone!
    @The Jacobsen Family: I've tried cooking bottle gourd with chicken breast strips and oyster sauce before. It was good!
    @Medeja: It's bottle gourd that I used so I'm sure you'll like it. But I also cook bitter gourd with shrimps. It tastes good too! :)

  14. This looks delicious, especially with the shrimp. Thank you for sharing it with Feed Me Tweet Me Follow Me Home last week.

    I have 'liked' your blog on Facebook this time. The Feed Me Tweet Me linky is up again for this week, so I do hope you will come along and link up again if you haven't already :) Have a wonderful weekend!

  15. My wife bought two small opus. Your recipe with shrimp is like the my mother used to cook in Bataan long time ago. I'll make it today.