This spring we’ve had bok choy growing out our ears. Well, technically, it is growing in our garden beds, but you get the idea. All that bok choy looks stunningly impressive while in the garden, but I’ve had several people ask me what exactly do I do with it, once it’s picked.
Here are my two favorite recipes with bok choy: bok choy pesto wontons and bok choy slaw with a lemon ginger dressing.
First, let’s talk about the bok choy pesto wonton recipe. (It is loosely adapted from a Rachael Ray recipe. But it is easier, healthier, and I don’t say inane phrases like “Yummo!” as I cook it.)
Start with loosely chopped bok choy leaves and stems (right around one pound’s worth), one large chopped onion, and three cloves of garlic minced.
Saute the onions for five to six minutes, until they are softened, then add the rest of your ingredients. Saute until everything is nicely fragrant and wilty (about three or four minutes.)
Transfer this mixture into your food processor. If you don’t have a food processor, you should wail and gnash your teeth, then come over and use mine.
Add half a cup of peanuts, sunflower seeds, walnuts, or pine nuts (if you’re feeling fancy and expensive.) Give the food processor a few pulses, then add a cup of canola or olive oil. Pulse until the mixture is smooth. If everything isn’t as creamy as you’d like, you can add a little more oil, bit by bit, until you reach the consistency you prefer.
At this point, congratulate yourself! You’ve made bok choy pesto. You can freeze this deliciousness for future recipes, put it on a pizza, eat it with crackers, or, OR, you can fill some lovely wonton wrappers with it.
I buy my wonton wrappers at the grocery store and keep them in the freezer until the day I need them. I place a defrosted wrapper in each slot of a lightly greased muffin pan (regular or mini sized) then I put a tablespoon or so of the bok choy filling in each wrapper. All that’s left is baking these beauties in the oven at 375 degrees for 10 to 15 minutes.
Then voila! (Or, as my eleven year old puts in his creative writing stories, Wah-la!)
Beautiful bok choy pesto wontons. Aren’t they dreamy?
Now onto the bok choy slaw with the lemon ginger dressing.
Take a pound of bok choy, chopping the leaves while cutting the stems into matchstick slices. Add two freshly grated carrots.
For the dressing: mix five tablespoons of bottled lemon juice (It doesn’t have to be fresh, no matter what Martha says in the original recipe) with two tablespoons canola/olive oil. Add two teaspoons of freshly grated ginger (in this instance, fresh ginger that you grate yourself is best, but go with whatever you have on hand. And if you use more than two teaspoons of ginger because you love it so, I’m not going to say a word.) Finally, add two small, peeled apples, chopped into small pieces. Stir the dressing, coating the apples and add some salt and pepper to taste.
Finally pour the dressing over the bok choy and carrot mixture. Stir to combine and keep cool in the refrigerator until it’s time to eat. (The lemon juice keeps the apples from turning yucky, so you can keep this salad in the fridge for a few days and eat it whenever you need something light and delicious.)
Let’s see that picture again:
There you have it, bok choy done two ways.
One last note: if you’re not a maniac gardener and grow your own bok choy like I do, then you can easily find it in the produce section of your grocery store. It doesn’t really matter how you get the bok choy home, just get the bok choy home. Besides being delicious, it’s a good source of vitamin C, calcium, and folic acid. End of sermon, amen.