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Wow! David and I showed up at the farm to do more planting this weekend, and there was so much ready to harvest that we decided to start the season a week earlier than planned!  We harvested a few things and called it a day, only to have a HUGE hail storm pass through a few hours later.  The next morning we walked the gardens to assess the damage.  We are thankful to report that the plastic hoop house does not have any holes!  Some longer term crops got shredded up a bit, like the broccoli and chard, but they have plenty of time to recover and grow new leaves.  The more immediate impact for CSA members is with the rhubarb.  The stalks were hit with hail and damaged quite severly.  We were planning on harvesting some for you on Memorial Day, but it will now need some time to recover.  It’s possible that we could include some in the CSA box next week, but it will be less than we had hoped for.

In your box this week, the surprise kick off to the 2012 CSA season:

  1. Bok choy
  2. Broccoli
  3. Kohlrabi
  4. Radishes (you can eat radish leaves too, but they are better cooked than raw)
  5. Green Onions
  6. Lettuce Mix (already washed twice and spun, ready for your salad bowl!)

TIP:  If you are not sure how to use something in your box, we have lots of recipes and ideas here on our website.  Try clicking on a veggie in the list in the left hand column for a list of posts that feature that vegetable.

For the bok choy, I especially recommend the Asian Bok Choy salad shared a few years ago from CSA member Amy.  I think it is even better if you add toasted sesame oil and grated ginger into the dressing.

What to do with all the bok choy we’ve been blessed with lately, from CSA member Lynn:

 Unwrapped Spring Roll Salad 

1 pack thin rice noodles – cook and save some of the water.
2 small bunches of Bok Choy thinly sliced including the greens.
1 bunch green onions thinly sliced including some of the green.
1 cup diced cucumber.
1 grated carrot.
handful of chopped mint
handful of chopped cilantro

Toss together. 

Make a dressing using:

½ cup of the reserved water
½ cup chunky peanut butter
¼ cup Hoisin sauce (or less depending on your taste)
And for a little kick a dash of garlic chili sauce

If serving later, wait to add the dressing.   I had some shrimp left over from the night before so I tossed these in with the salad.  You could add just about any vegetable.

Hey everybody, I got a kick out of seeing that Gwyneth Paltrow loves Asian Bok Choy Salad too!  Their version is a little different, without the hard-to-find wasabi peas, so you may want to check it out yourself:

http://goop.com/newsletter/66/en/

Share your tasty discoveries and inspire your fellow CSA members!  To get the ball rolling, here are FOUR recipe ideas from CSA member Melanie:

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I’m absolutely loving my first ever harvest from my first ever CSA!! I’m so glad I joined. I’m pretty much obsessed with food and cooking so I thought I’d give you all a couple new recipes that I came up with this week. On Monday I could not wait to eat my baby bok choi so I made a Asian dish with it (one of my favorite cuisines).

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VEGGIE LO MEIN
4 oz. soba noodles, cooked, rinsed in cold water and drained
2 tsp light olive oil
8 oz mushrooms, any kind, sliced
1/2 cup onions, any kind, chopped ( I used some of this weeks green parts)
4 radishes, chopped (I used the icicle radishes)
1 baby bok choy, sliced thickly
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 tbsp oyster sauce (or molasses could work too)
2 tbsp dark sesame oil
1 tbsp liquid aminos (or low sodium soy sauce)
1/2 tsp sugar
squirt of Sirracha or other hot sauce
cilantro, optional garnish
chopped peanuts, optional garnish

Heat oil in a skillet or wok over med high until almost smoking (use lower heat if you pan is non-stick, which I don’t recommend). Add mushrooms and leave them alone, without stirring for a couple minutes until browned nicely on the bottom. Toss around the pan and after another couple minutes add the onions and radishes. Cook a few minutes, then add the bok choy and garlic. Mix together the oyster sauce, sesame oil, liquid aminos, sugar and hot sauce. Pour the sauce over the veggies and toss. Add the noodles and toss until coated and heated through. Garnish and eat. Serves 2.

Tonight I was trying to use up some leftover cheese and remembered a recipe I saw on Alton Brown’s show Good Eats called FROMMAGE FORT.

It is a cheese dip that uses up 1 lb of assorted leftover cheese, any kind!! And along with some white wine and garlic I added some lemon thyme instead of the parsley. YUM!!

I’m thinking that if I don’t eat it all tonight it would be an excellent idea for

FANCY MAC AND CHEESE:
Make some pasta but save a little of the cooking water. Stir in some of the cheese dip into the drained noodles with some lamb’s quarters, some of the pasta cooking water and a dash of lemon.

I’ll also be eating RADISH SANDWICHES tomorrow in honor of my grandma:
Mix softened butter with some minced radishes and spread over your favorite bread, OR just put some thinly sliced radishes over buttered bread, sprinkle with salt and eat!

Happy gardening and even happier eating!

Melanie Foster

CSA member Amy found this recipe and loved it!  It’s super tasty, and thanks to the Bok Choy it is packed with loads of calcium, iron, and vitamins A & C.

Due to copyright issues for this one we can provide the link but not reprint it.  The recipe also includes chives/green onions, ramen noodles, and wasabi peas.

Bok Choy (aka Pac Choi) is a lovely asian green that has a crisp stem and a mild leaf.  CSA member Pete likes to snack on it raw and also raves about a Bok Choy soup his mom used to make growing up in Moorehead.

For today, however, I will share the way I was taught to cook Bok Choy while I was working at my first CSA in college.  My coworker Amy had just returned from studying abroad in China, and she made this for me on a hot plate on the floor of a dorm room at St. John’s (where we lived for the summer).

–Break off the stems from the center and wash, paying special attention to getting off the grit from the bottom of the stem.
–Leave the stem and leaf whole or cut into bite size pieces, keeping the leaves and stems separate (the leaves into 2-4 pieces, the stem into 1-2 pieces).
–Saute garlic and grated fresh ginger in olive oil (the amount is up to you. This past weekend I used ~2 inches of fresh ginger and 4-5 garlic scapes).
–Throw in the stems and saute for a few minutes (how long depends on how crisp or soft you want them)
–Throw in the leaves, stir, cover with a lid to let it steam for a minute.

Serve with rice, and tamari/soy sauce.

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