But five minutes of prep? you can't beat that!
This is a super-easy way to cook the 'real bok choy', which can be somewhat fibrous. This means it is often stir-fried, where small pieces and high, fast heat break down the fibers.
Instead, here, the braising technique uses liquid (here, a mix of coconut milk and water colored and flavored with turmeric) and time (a good 30 minutes, unattended except to monitor the temperature) to soften the stalks for consumption. Don't expect the coconut flavor to permeate the bok choy, however -- at least this didn't, perhaps because I used a low-fat version?
Anyway, this is good enough, a useful 'basic' recipe that really lets the bok choy itself shine through.
FROM THE ARCHIVES See the Recipe Box for a growing collection of bok choy recipes.
2006 | Fattoush, the Lebanese salad, the third time's the charm!
BRAISED SHANGHAI BOK CHOY
Time to table: 35 minutes
1 pound Shanghai or other bok choy, baby versions if possible
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon turmeric
1/2 tablespoon kosher salt (it seems like a lot but it was needed, plus it's really being used to salt the braising liquid, not what will be eaten, the bok choy)
1 cup coconut milk (I used low fat)
1/2 cup water
Trim the bok choy, then cut into quarters vertically. Let drain.
In a large skillet with a cover, heat the oil til shimmery. Add the turmeric and salt and stir a minute. Add a few drops of liquid, stir til turmeric and salt become smooth and un-lumpy enough to add more liquid. Pack in the bok choy, cut sides down. Cover with coconut milk and water and bring to a slow boil. Cover and let cook for about 15 minutes, checking occasionally to make sure the slow boil is being maintained, also to press the bok choy into the liquid to submerge if needed. If the bok choy isn't fully submerged, turn over after 15 minutes. Cook another 15 minutes. Remove bok choy from liquid and serve with lime wedges.
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