Several years ago bok choy was mostly found in Asian grocery stores and menus. As our population has diversified this nutritious vegetable has found its way into mainstream markets and is no longer isolated to the ethnic table.
Bok choy is eaten at various stages of growth from shoots and seedlings to fully mature plants. Both the leaves and the root of bok choy are used in making kabu pickles and is also added to hotpot dishes and soups. The baby varieties are very nice for braising and make a nutritious accompaniment to any fish or meat dish.
The shoots can be rinsed and dried and used in stir-fries. The dwarf varieties (most common) can be steamed or braised. To cook the longer mature bok choy one should separate the leaves, clean well then cut the thick stem into pieces. The stems need a longer cooking time so they should be prepared first and the leaves added later. You can also just use the leaves and save the stems for the soup pot.
**Note: the variety shown here is called joi choi
Available in Asian markets that specialize in Chinese or other Asian vegetables as well as in many well-stocked grocery stores. Bok choy may be able to be found in your local farmer's market as well.
Look for bright green leaves and white stalks free from brown spots.
Ancient medicine suggests using bok choy to treat heat congestion including a dry cough, fever and chills. The vegetable is high in vitamins A and C and contains numerous phytonutrients.