Commercially available Bamboo Shoots are the terminal buds of these giant lanceolate reeds that form the huge forests throughout tropical Asia. Their color may varies from white to brown or even gray, ivory, yellow and green. The diameter of the smallest is not larger than a feather but the largest may go up to 25 cm in diameter and may exceed 20 meters high. Bamboo is a popular product in China, Japan, Vietnam, Indonesia, Thailand, Laos and other countries in South East Asia. Sold in can in the rest of the world, bamboos are often sold in brine (salt or vinegar). Once cooked the bamboos release sometime a strong UN-pleasant smell to westerners.
In your recipe, if you are using fresh shouts, they need to be peeled, diced or sliced and boiled in water (with lemon or baking soda) to remove their bitterness; Dry shouts need to be soaked in hot water for at least one our; And canned shouts can be used directly out of the can.