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Grilled Baby Bok Choy with Miso
Bok Choy is one underestimated vegetable in the typical American diet. What a shame it is such a misunderstood and unappreciated gem. We are fortunate in that it is available year-round in almost all grocers. As an increasingly popular member of the cruciferous vegetable family, bok choy is recognized more and more often for its standout nutrient richness. This member of the cabbage family is one of our highest nutritionally ranked vegetables and it provides good to excellent amounts of 21 nutrients. Unlike some other members of the cabbage family, these nutrients include omega-3s, as well as the antioxidant mineral zinc.
|Fresh Bok choy|
Although a member of the cabbage family, bok choy resembles leafy greens, especially chard. Unlike many leafy greens, it does not shrink down to nothing when cooked. The stalks are crisp and fleshy – like celery but not stringy. It is fat free and low in calories as well as loaded with vitamin C, K, calcium and potassium. When selecting your bok choy, avoid wilted, broken or spotted leaves, limp stalks and discoloration. Bok choy will keep for a few days unwashed in a plastic bag in the crisper drawer of your refrigerator. Get some today. I promise you will absolutely LOVE this preparation!
Other favorite, and perhaps forgotten (?) wonderful vegetables & chilled soup:
Roasted Radishes with Brown Butter and Lemon – unique and fabulous!
Marinated, Grilled Artichokes – always, always gets rave review!
- 6 heads (about 1 ½ lbs. total) baby bok choy
- 3 Tb unsalted butter, at room temperature
- 3 Tb white or yellow miso paste
- 2 Tb olive oil
- 1 Tb fresh lemon juice
- Pinch kosher salt
- ¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
Prepare the grill for direct heat: If using a gas grill, preheat to medium-high with lid closed. If using a charcoal grill, light the charcoal or wood briquettes; when the briquettes are ready, distribute them evenly over the cooking area. For a medium-hot fire, you should be able to hold your hand about 6 inches above the coals for 4-6 seconds. Have ready a spray water bottle for taming any flames. Clean the grill grate with a stiff brush.
Meanwhile cut the leaves off the bok choy stalks, and then cut the stalks in half lengthwise. Rinse the leaves and stalks well, then shake and pat dry to remove as much moisture as possible. Place stalks aside.
Use a fork to blend the butter and miso in a small bowl, then use your clean hands to coat the bok choy stalks all over with the butter-miso mixture.
|Ready for the grill|
Arrange the bok choy stalks cut side down on the grill. Close the lid and cook for about 5 minutes, until brown on the underside. Use tongs to turn over the stalks. Close the lid and cook 5-6 minutes, until golden and crisp-tender.
|Begin grilling over flame with the flat side down|
While stalks are on the grill, stack the bok choy leaves, then roll them tightly and cut them crosswise into thin ribbons (chiffonade). Arrange them on a serving platter as a bed for the stalks. Drizzle with the olive oil and lemon juice, and then sprinkle with the salt and pepper.
Arrange the grilled bok choy stalks on the dressed leaves, which will wilt a bit. Season stalks lightly with pepper and serve right away. Yummmmmm