Wednesday, November 3, 2010

0 Recipe #191: Chinese Broccoli, Bok Choy, & Beet Stir-Fry

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This is one of my favorite side dishes. To serve as an entrée, just add tofu, beef, or chicken.

Chinese Broccoli, Bok Choy, & Beet Stir-Fry

2 c. beets (about 2 large, whole beets)
2 c. Chinese broccoli, chopped crosswise into 1" pieces
2 c. bok choy
1 c. beet greens, sliced crosswise into 1 1/2" pieces
2 c. water (for steaming veggies)
2 Tbsp. sesame seed oil
2 Tbsp. fresh ginger, peeled & finely minced (about 2" piece)
2 Tbsp. fresh garlic, peeled & finely minced (about 4 large cloves)
3 Tbsp. whole scallions, sliced crosswise into thin rounds (about 1 extra-large scallion)
1 tsp. Thai red chili peppers, stemmed, sliced lengthwise, then seeded, de-ribbed, & diced (about 2 chilies)
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
1/4 c. dry sherry
1/4 c. soy sauce
2 Tbsp. Chinese white rice wine vinegar
2 tsp. sesame seeds

Directions: Bring water to a rolling boil in a medium-sized sauce pot, about 8 minutes. Then boil the beets, whole, for about 30 minutes, or until tender. About 20 minutes into cooking the beets, steam Chinese broccoli, boy choy, & beet greens in 2 c. water in a large (12-13") sauté pan for about 10 minutes, or until almost tender. (The steamed veggies should still be firm & have a gentle crunch to them). Remove steamed veggies from heat, drain, & transfer to a large bowl. Next, remove beets from heat, drain hot water, & then pour cold water into pot to speed up cooling process. When beets have cooled, drain & peel them (the skin should almost rub off when peeled), then cut them into 1" wedges, & set aside. In the same sauté pan, sauté ginger, garlic, scallions, & chilies in sesame seed oil for about 5 minutes on low heat. Season with salt & pepper. Deglaze with sherry, soy sauce, & rice wine vinegar for about 30 seconds. Then add beets & cook for 5-10 minutes on high heat. (While cooking the beets, if the liquid cooks down too quickly, add one or two tablespoons of water if necessary. Be careful not to add too much water, or it'll take too long to cook down the liquid & the beets may turn mushy.) Pour bowl of Chinese broccoli, bok choy, & beet greens into the pan & cook for about another 5-10 minutes, or until there's only a thin layer of liquid on the bottom of the pan, & then remove from heat. Divide into individual servings, transfer to plates, & sprinkle each portion with sesame seeds.

Jīnjīnyǒuwèi (津津有味)! ("Bon appétit"!)

Yield: Serves 3-4 as a side dish, or 1-2 as an entrée.

Chef's Notes: Wear latex or rubber gloves when handling beets, beet greens, & chili peppers. This'll save your hands from turning red from the beets & beet greens or from getting irritated by the chilies (especially if you happen to have any cuts on your hands or accidentally rub your eyes!). It's a small step to stay safe & clean, but trust me, you'll be happy you did it. :)

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