Bok Choy—Oh, Boy!

bok choyBok Choy—Oh, Boy!

A few years ago I found a new favorite “friend” in the produce section—baby bok choy. A leafy relative of the cabbage family, bok choy has long been used in Asian cuisine. More recently, however, it has been gaining popularity in the US markets; so much so, that big box stores like Costco are regularly stocking it in their refrigerated sections.

What bok choy lacks in distinctive flavor it makes up in nutritional importance. It is extremely high in calcium (especially great for women fighting bone loss), vitamins A and C, and it contains a myriad of cancer-fighting and anti-aging phytonutrients.

This versatile vegetable has added a pleasant variety to some of my family’s meals. I have sautéed baby bok choy in a bit of olive oil and garlic with a splash of low-sodium soy sauce and served it as a side dish, chopped and wilted it in an Asian wonton soup I make, added it to a stir-fry, and used it raw in place of lettuce on sandwiches for a nutrient-rich crunch (this is my daughter’s favorite way to eat it). I have even tossed some left over baby bok choy into salads for extra vitamin power.

Cooked or raw, bok choy maintains its nice textural crunch which adds to its “allure” in my book. This plant does not have a long shelf life in your refrigerator, so buy it within a few days from use. I forgive it for its tendency to wilt and yellow quickly because it gives such a powerful nutritional punch to so many dishes when eaten in a timely manner.

Try some today…and you, too, may discover you’ve found a new best friend in the produce aisle!

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