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Jan 24, 2018
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Stocking Up on Yu Choy

June 1st 02:06pm, 2011

060111_YuChoyThough the temperature outside might indicate otherwise, we’re not yet in summer, at least not in terms of produce. Instead, we’re in somewhat of a seasonal purgatory with the cool-weather crops slowly fading into memory and the splash of summer’s bounty yet to make an appearance at the market. We plan to make the most of this time, seeing it as a chance to seek out a few lesser known vegetables.

Enter yu choy, also known as choy sum and Chinese flowering cabbage. These (and a host of other names) all refer to the same edible Asian green, available locally through YellowTree Farm. Making a recent appearance at the Maplewood Farmers’ Market, this vegetable bears a slight resemblance to bok choy, although it’s thinner and, therefore, more tender. It also boasts a slightly less bitter taste.

Both the leaves and the tender stalks are edible. Just be sure to pay attention when cooking; a quick steam or sauté is all they need. Likewise, use a light hand with any sauces or accompaniments – you don’t want to lose that crunch or delicate flavor. Chop the stalks and add them into any stir fry or serve them warm over some sesame noodles. You can even steam them whole to serve alongside a slab of grilled tuna. Use the leaves up quickly, though, as the stalks won’t last much longer than a week in the fridge. That will give you plenty of time to get ready for the onslaught of summer.

By Shannon Parker

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