Thursday, February 4, 2010

Creamed Shanghai Bok Choy



From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...This, arguably, is the ultimate in miniature vegetables. Our local Asian market has started stocking a diminutive form of Shanghai bok choy. I'm thrilled. Bob and I became huge fans of the vegetable in China. Bok choy has crunchy stems and crinkled, spinach-like leaves. It appeared almost daily on the breakfast buffets in tourist hotels where it was steamed until crisp-tender and then napped with a light cream sauce. It appeared later in the day as a stir fry, topped with a garlic sauce that could be hot or not, depending on location or the cook's whim. Bok choy is a mild flavored form of cabbage that brings a lovely crispness to any dish to which it's added. I noted as we moved from one area to another that the color of the bok choy appeared to change. It wasn't my imagination. I learned that there are actually two types of the vegetable. We had been eating miniature forms of bok choy. The Canton variety had small yellow flowers and was lighter in color and sweeter in taste than its Shanghai counterpart. The Shanghai variety had a green hue and larger leaves, but, strangely enough, was the smaller of the two. I fell in love with both of the miniature versions because less chopping would be necessary with meal preparation. Once home, I began a search for recipes that would produce dishes similar to what we had been eating. This recipe for creamed bok choy makes a dish that is similar to the one we had for breakfast. I think you'll enjoy it.

Creamed Bok Choy...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite, inspired by Gloria Miller

Ingredients:
1 pound baby bok choy (Shanghai or Canton)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup milk
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 cup minced smoked ham (optional)
Pepper to taste

Directions:
1) Trim ends from bok choy and cut stems into 2-inch pieces if necessary.
2) Heat a wok or large skillet over high heat. Add oil. When it begins to shimmer and bok choy and stir fry for for 2 minutes. Add salt and stock. Bring to a boil. Cover pan and cook over medium heat until softened, about 4 minutes.
3) Meanwhile, dissolve cornstarch in milk. When bok choy is softened, reduce heat and slowly stir milk mixture into pan. Do not allow milk mixture to boil. Cover pan and simmer for 3 minutes longer, stirring once or twice.
4) If using ham, sprinkle it on bok choy. Add pepper to taste. Serve hot. Yield: 4-6 servings.

25 comments:

A Feast for the Eyes said...

I love Bok Choy, and I don't know why I don't make it more often. What a simple recipe-- one I would never have thought of trying. Thanks for inspiring me to try this more often.

Katherine Aucoin said...

I've only cooked with bok choy once and really loved it! I'll have to try this, you are syuch an inspiration to me!

Allie and Pattie said...

You must have radar! My forte is definitely Italian and European cooking, but I was actually on the hunt for a good bok choy one! Thank you-can't wait to try it
xoxo Pattie

Trendsetters said...

new recipe ...thank u

Vanillastrawberryspringfields said...

Bok Choy delights but ur recipe rocks....

George Gaston said...

Mary, this sounds amazing! I would never had thought about preparing bok choy with a cream sauce. I definitely have to give this a try. Thanks...

ButterYum said...

Oooh.. have been waiting for a good bok choy recipe. Thanks for posting this!

:)
ButterYum

The Blonde Duck said...

They're so cute! Thanks for the tip on the trouble on my site...

QIS said...

my family love this bok choy so much. we always cooked this with oyster sauce. your recipe sound delicious!!thanks for sharing =)

Kim said...

This sounds like a delightful recipe!

Big Dude said...

Early this week, I gave a talk to a garden club about how to use cool weather veggies to get early color into their flower gardens and one of the plants I suggested was bok choy. I sent them some follow up info today and included this recipe.

g said...

My husband loves cabbage, and I never seem to have enough interesting recipes to satisfy him. This sounds like a good one.

Chef E said...

This is one of those veggies I eat because I know its good for me, so I never really cared for it on its own, but creamed...well I think you just changed my mind Mary!

Alessandra said...

Very interesting the use of milk. I always use water with cornstarch, or light vegetable stock, for this kind of dish, milk seems so...'non-Chinese'.

Do you think that the one you tasted in the hotels (in Asia, I presume) may had had milk in it?

Mary said...

Alessandra, they definitely had milk in the sauce. Gloria Miller wrote The Thousand Recipe Chinese Cookbook, which was at one time held in high regard. The hotels of which I spoke are all in Asia.

theUngourmet said...

I love bok choy but I don't buy it very often because I don't have a lot of recipes for it. Thanks. This recipe looks delicious!

Megan said...

I love cabbage so I know I would love this. The mini bok choy is so cute!

DailyChef said...

Awesome! I always feel that bok choi is underrated and does not get the attention it deserves. Loved reading your post

Coleen's Recipes said...

You are really an awesome photographer. This sounds delicious!!

zurin said...

You cooked that so well! its looks fresh and green and utterly delicious!!

My Little Space said...

I've never make Shanghai Bok Choy with milk! Wonder how's it taste like!

Karen said...

I love bok choy. These little mini's are so cute!

Katy ~ said...

What a delicious way to serve bok choy; I've only had it grilled or in soups. This is fabulous.

Donetta said...

Great recipe. The bok choy in my garden is ready to harvest.

Elena Toma said...

This wonderful recipe, I'm a fan of this vegetable. Mary, thanks for visiting and nice words about me. I like your blog very much and I will test some recipes that I have enjoyed.

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