Saturday, October 13, 2007

Garlic yu choi plus other green goodness

I love the Container Store, because I am a faithful subscriber to the fallacy that having the tools of organization will somehow, magically, make me be a more organized person. It works, a little, sometimes.

Today I was on a mission to get some food storage containers and something to use for a garbage bin under the sink, the only place I can keep one out of sight. I'd been using a cut-down copier-paper box with notches to hold a kitchen-sized garbage bag. Not very elegant. At the Container Store I found a cute little "toy bin" on casters that looked about right, until I got home and discovered the top was too big for the top of the bag. Argh. But all was not lost.
I just happened to have a stick-on hook in my (well-organized) junk drawer. Stuck it on and hooked the bag loop around it. Ta-da!
Dinner tonight, garlic yu choi with pasta. The recipe is from Jaden's Steamy Kitchen. I swear, it seems like I just follow her around cooking her recipes like some creepy blogstalker-fan, but I was simply Googling yu choi recipes, and that's what came up! Really!

What's interesting about this yu choi is that I bought it two weeks ago. It looked to me like something that could benefit from being stored as I do parsley, with the tips of the stems cut off and then stood upright in a mug of water, with a plastic bag over the whole thing. I did this, put it in the back of the fridge and then forgot I had it. Remembered today and expected to pull out a wodge of green rotted goo. Nope! Still crisp and green, and many of the flowers had opened up. That's impressive.
The recipe's easy-peasy. You brown whole garlic cloves in a little oil, toss in the chopped-up greens and stir them around a bit, then add a quarter-cup of chicken broth, cover and steam for a few minutes.
There was enough salt in the broth (even using low-sodium), and the pasta had some shredded parm on top, so this dish didn't need any extra seasoning. The garlic chunks are really tasty, too.

(This dish is not just dinner; it's also my entry for Kalyn's Weekend Herb Blogging two-year anniversary celebration.)


  1. Yay! You store your herbs upright in a mug of water! When I mentioned that this is how I get my herbs to last longer, I was told that I probably have way too much room in my refrigerator and that the preferred way to do it is to roll the herbs in paper towels, and then in a baggie. Mine don't last longer than a week like that. I can keep mint going to 4 weeks and cilantro for 3 weeks this way!

    And, you really want that saffron, don't you? 'fess up! That's what all this is about!

  2. I don't think I've ever seen this type of leafy green before, and I love finding out about something new. I just googled it, and it sounds to me like it could possibly be from the same family as Broccoli Rabe, at least the plant and the flowers look very similar to me. Sounds delicious; I do love greens cook with garlic! Thanks for helping us celebrate the two year anniversary!

  3. You were up late, Manisha!

    Storing herbs this way doesn't take up excessive space, and I think it makes them last longer because the leaves aren't sitting smothered in water as they would be in a paper towel. Plus, it's less fussy to do.

    Hi Kalyn. Happy anniversary! Yu choi is indeed related to rabe, but with yellow flowers instead of white. They are both in the brassica/mustard/cabbage family. Asian markets will carry it (I get mine from the Hmong farmers at the farmers market). This is the ideal time of year to eat it, much like kale. I'm sure it's good for you, too!

  4. Oh, and I didn't win the saffron. But Amy pointed me to a cheap source here.

  5. Oh, that's too bad! I have some quality saffron from Kashmir coming my way in the next couple of weeks. I can't wait!

  6. I must sojurn to the container store one of these days--I, too, long for organization. I need a place for everything, so I can put everything in its place.

    Right now it's all in piles.

  7. Yes, piles are problematic. I put the piles in mail crates, and next thing you know I've got overflowing crates sitting around. Not really organized.

    Mmmm, Kashmir saffron.