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Have you eaten the green-leafed vegetable called bok choy? This Chinese vegetable is very much like western cabbages. It can be used in salads, soups and stir fries. But how do you cut bok choy? Is it difficult?
I’ve also asked those questions before. It turned out that cutting bok choy is very easy. Plus, there are plenty of recipes where you can incorporate this vegetable. Continue reading so that you would get more info on this Asian veggie.
What is bok choy?
Bok choy is also known as pak choi or Chinese cabbage. The name is Cantonese for the white vegetable. It has dark green leaves which are shaped like blades. The leaves, which form one cluster, are very similar to celery and even mustard leaves.
While the plant originated from China, it is now grown in other parts of the world like Europe and America. Moreover, bok choy is available all year round. This is one of the reasons why it has grown in popularity in recent years, aside from the fact that it can be used in many recipes.
Health benefits of bok choy
It is very rich in beta-carotene, which can lower risks of cancer, cataract, and macular degeneration. The Macular Degeneration Association says that a cup of this vegetable has more than the recommended daily allowance of beta carotene.
The Harvard School of Public Health also recommends a daily intake of bok choy as it can lower risks of ovarian and prostate cancer.
How to cut bok choy?
Of course, you can’t get those health benefits without cooking bok choy.
But before you slice bok choy leaves, here are several tips to keep in mind when selecting bok choy brunches :
- Get those heads with bright green leaves.
- Avoid those brunches with holes and discoloration.
- Larger leaves are ideal for making salads and cooking soups. Smaller and narrow heads, on the other hand, are ideal for stir fries.
In cutting bok choy, follow these steps:
- Start by washing the leaves under running water to wash off residual dirt.
- Remove the leaves from the stem.
- Lay the leaves on a cutting board. Using a sharp knife like a sushi knife , cut the leaves into strips about an inch wide.
- Cut the base of the stem to remove the remnants of the roots. Cut the stem at an angle so that each slice will have a bigger surface area and thus, easier and quicker to cook. I usually cut the stems into discs about ¼ inch thick.
As you can see, cutting bok choy isn’t that hard. Just remember to always curl up the fingers of your hand holding the vegetable. The fingers should be pointed toward your palm and away from the knife. This way, you will be able to avoid cutting yourself.
Simple bok choy recipes
Now that you have learned how to cut bok choy, you would want to learn some easy bok choy recipes, right?
Here is one simple recipe that you can do with the Chinese cabbage. This bok choy with garlic and oyster sauce recipe is so easy that you can do it in less than 30 minutes. It is a great meal for lunch and dinner, especially when you serve it with rice. I would recommend that you get baby bok choy for this recipe.
- Three bunches of bok choy, remove the base
- Three tablespoons of oyster sauce
- A teaspoon of white sugar
- 10 teaspoons of water
- Two teaspoons of minced garlic
- A sprinkle of black pepper
- One-fourth teaspoon of sesame oil
- Three tablespoons of cooking oil
Step by step guide
- Mix and stir the sesame oil, oyster sauce, and water in a small bowl. Set this mixture aside.
- Combine the garlic and oil in a pan placed over medium heat. Cook the garlic until it begins to turn light brown in color.
- Add the oyster sauce mix and put some black pepper. Stir a few times before letting it boil.
- Add the bok choy then stir. Cover the pan and let the food cook, or until the sauce has been reduced to a half. You can also put some salt if you wish.
- Transfer the cooked bok choy to a serving plate before serving with rice.
Aside from being quick and easy to do, this recipe also calls for a few ingredients. Most of the ingredients, in fact, are likely to be in your pantry right now.
Bok choy is a vegetable that’s so packed with nutrition. It’s also very easy to cut and cook, as you have learned after reading this article. So if I were you, I’d stock up more of this vegetable. It’s the ideal green leafy veggie—nutritious, delicious, and simple to prepare and cook.