Sunday, March 7, 2010

There Coulda Been a Baby In'ersh...

Bok choy (aka "Chinese cabbage") has a sweet, mild flavor that goes well with tofu, mushrooms, poultry and seafood. This Asian supper veggie has a multitude of health benefits including high levels of vitamin-A, vitamin-C, beta-carotene, calcium and dietary fiber. I enjoy baby bok choy, as I'm not too keen on their adult counterpart's stalk-to-leaf ratio -- plus they look infinitely more appetizing on a plate.

Bok choy & shiitake mushrooms go together like peas and carrots…only Asian. The cabbage's subtle bite negotiates the mushroom's umami musk like no other. With this dish, less is more -- re-hydrate the mushrooms, blanch the greens and combine with some of the mushroom stock, soy sauce, sugar, rice wine vinegar and sesame oil. You can zazz it up w/ some ginger, or tofu, but the bare basics make for a truly enjoyable dish on their own.

"Braised" Baby Bok Choy & Shiitake Mushrooms"

2 #'s baby bok boy, rinsed and halved
2 cups dried shiitake mushrooms
1 cup mushroom stock
2 tsp sugar
1 TBS sesame oil
1 TBS soy sauce
1 tsp mirin
1 tsp rice wine vinegar

1. add dried mushrooms to a medium sauce pot, cover w/ water and bring to a boil. kill the heat and allow to steep, covered for 20 minutes. drain the mushrooms, reserving one cup of the mushroom stock, and squeeze out any excess moisture.

2. blanch baby bok choy in batchers until just tender; about 3 minutes. shock in an ice bath to hault the cooking process.

3. combine the reserved mushroom stock, sugar, sesame oil, soy sauce, mirin and rice wine vinegar. whisk well and combine w/mushrooms and baby bok choy.

© 2009 c. c. villani @ "mission: insatiable" -