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Bok Choy

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Chinese white cabbage; pak choy; pak choi

What is it?

A relative of cabbage predominant in Asian cuisine, bok choy has a mild, sweet cabbagy flavor and a soft crunch. The stalks are crisp, refreshing, and mildly cabbagy tasting. The leaves have a nuttiness that intensifies when cooked. It’s gentle bitterness that stands up to strong, rich flavors like sesame, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, oyster sauce, chiles, and mushrooms. You’ll find both mature bok choy (about the size of a head of romaine lettuce) and baby bok choy (about 7 inches tall) in markets.

Don’t have it?

Napa cabbage can be a good substitute for sliced bok choy, especially in stir-fries.

How to choose:

Look for tight, unwilted heads ranging from bright green to dark green, with no signs of yellowing or drying. Heads range from a few ounces to more than a pound. Baby bok choy or small heads of mature bok choy are ideal. If using baby bok choy, choose ones that are all about the same size for even cooking.

How to prep:

Wash bok choy and discard any wilted leaves. You can leave baby bok choy whole or cut it in half lenthwise, but cut larger bok choy into pieces for stir-frying. It flavors bes with assertive Asian seasonings like toasted sesame oil, fermented black beans, chiles, fresh ginger, and garlic; milder flavors like lemon, white wine, and fresh herbs are nice, too.

How to store:

Keep bok choy refrigerated.


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