When it comes to food, the busy holiday season can cause all of us to default to a routine list of recipes. It seems like each year we bake grandma’s apple cinnamon tart and smoke dad’s butter injected turkey. This year I’m proposing a challenge: Introduce one new ingredient a week to your family, neighbors, and friends. Let’s start with Bok Choy!
Bok Choy, or “Baby Bok,” is a staple of Asian cooking. There are two unique parts to Bok Choy - the leafy top and the celery-like stalk on the bottom. Both parts can be served raw or cooked. However, if you’re going to cook the Bok Choy, it should be noted that the stalk will take longer to cook than the leaves.
It’s very easy to find at most grocery stores. If you live in the Valley, you can find pre-washed and packaged Bok Choy at Trader Joes for less than $3 a pound. If you like to garden then Bok Choy will be a joy for you to plant. Planting is best during the cooler months. It matures quickly and is more tolerant of weather extremes. Bok Choy is a perfect fall and winter plant here in the Sonoran Desert, with our climate giving the plant a sweet, crisp, flavor.
Bok Choy is most commonly stir-fried with other components, but it’s much more versatile than that. Here is a list of ways in which you can use Bok Choy:
Add Bok Choy to chicken noodle soup for the winter.
Sauté Bok Choy with garlic and ginger for a warm side dish.
Stuff and bake the base of Bok Choy with quinoa and sausage.
Thinly slice each part of the Bok Choy to make cole slaw or salad.
These are a few ways I use Bok Choy, but I’d love to hear your ideas. Comment on this post and share your favorite Bok Choy creations. Or, share your recipe on Instagram using #babybok and #azchefmallory!