I shop at my local Asian market about once a month. It’s a small store with only a few aisles, but it pretty much has all of my staples, whether they be pancit bihon, sauces or chili pastes, fermented shrimp, bao, lemongrass, or something other.…
Month: June 2012
I know, I know. Yu Choy, I choy, Bok choy. Seriously though, yu choy. It’s new to me, and I love it.
A couple of weeks ago I rode my bike to the local farmer’s market here in town. It is something I love to do most every Saturday morning while the market is running. For one, it is early and everything is quiet around me, with the exception of the whirring sound from my mountain bike tires, that and it’s a farmer’s market!
So as I made my way through the small, rectangular shape of the market, I looked at what was available to me, as well as the cost from the various vendors and farmers. That day I decided upon some scallions, rhubarb, and something from one of the Asian vendors, something I never have seen before. What laid in front of me looked similar to bok choy, at least some of the leaves, but they had yellow bulbs or flowers. I immediately asked the girls, ‘what is this?’. I must have stunned them as one looked at the other, and a few seconds later, one said ‘yu choy’. I asked how they would prepare it, and they came back with a sauté with soy sauce.
So as I rode home, I knew exactly how I was going to treat this yu choy. Something simple, yet flavorful.
Let’s get started.
- 1/2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 bunch of yu choy
- 2 tbsp oyster sauce
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 pinch of pepper
- 2 tbsp water
Begin by cleaning your yu choy by running it under water. Spin in a salad spinner to dry, or blot it with a towel.
Cut your bunch of yu choy into thirds.
Get a large nonstick skillet onto the stove on medium heat. Once it is hot, add in the oil. Toss in the garlic, and cook for about 20 seconds. Toss in the yu choy. Use your cooking skills and give the skillet a toss, or use some tongs and gently toss the yu choy.
Add in the oyster sauce, tossing to incorporate the thick sauce. Add in the water, and pepper, tossing along the way.
The yu choy will wilt down a bit. Cook the yu choy will only take about 5 minutes, if that. The goal is to have tender stalks and retain a nice, bright green color.
When you are ready to eat, simply plate on your serving dish, and dig in.
The flavor is everything you would expect from great Chinese greens. They are tender, fresh, and go perfect with pretty much anything.
So the next time you are at your local farmer’s market, talk to the vendors and figure out what things are and try something new. Hope you enjoy.
A few weeks back we went to have dinner at our cousin’s house for a communion party. Our cousins are really into good Chinese food, and dim sum in particular, among other things of course. As a new Chinese restaurant opened up in town, called J.J. Chen’s Eatery, our cousins have been sampling their menu and decided to order a bunch of food from them. Needless to say, their food is actually really good and is pretty competitive with some of our local favorites, Fortune. There were some of the standard dishes like fried rice and beef and brocoli, but there was one item that stood out. It was a simple egg roll. My first reaction was ‘oh great, another egg roll with soggy cabbage and other crap’, but when bitten into, whoa, I was taken back. It was an egg roll alright, and a simple one, but it was an eggroll with nothing else but shrimp inside! I’ve never had such a thing before. Sure, I make egg rolls all of the time (here, here, here, here, and here), but never had I imagined that a simple egg roll loaded with shrimp would be that amazing.
So, you know what I had to do right? Recreate it. AND.IT.WAS.AWESOME.
Let’s get started.
- 2 lbs of fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined, roughly chopped
- 1 package of Spring Roll Wrappers (view here)
- 1 egg, beaten
- 3 cups of canola oil
Yep, that’s it. Four simple ingredients that will just please your soul. I guarantee it.
Begin by having all of your ingredients ready. Take one egg roll wrapper and place it in front of you. Review this video on the egg roll wrapping process. Add a a couple tablespoons of the chopped shrimp, and take the egg roll wrapper and fold over. Roll a couple of times, then fold in the sides, tucking them in, and continuing to roll. When you are about an inch or so from the end of the wrapper, brush on some of the beaten egg, and roll to seal. Repeat until all of your shrimp is wrapped.
Heat a pot on medium to high heat. Add the oil and let this come up to about 370 degrees. Add a few egg rolls into the preheated oil and cook until they are golden brown, about 6 minutes or so. Repeat.
Remove them from the oil and let them drain. Don’t eat these immediately. As tempting as it is, they are just super hot. Let them cool for about 5 minutes or so. When you are ready to eat, serve them on your party plate and let your guests dig in.
The result? Well, nothing but amazing. As simple as this sounds, the shrimp are super moist and tender and the crunchy exterior just make these a great appetizer. Give it a shot. Hope you enjoy.