Thursday, June 23, 2011

Chinese Broccoli (Gai Lan) with Oyster Sauce

In Hawaii choi sum was the vegetable of choice, served with oyster sauce.  It was a must each time we went out for dim sum.  But now I have a new favorite. 

When I moved to the mainland I discovered gai lan.  I was first introduced to gai lan at a dim sum restaurant in Portland, purely by accident.  Mindlessly pointing and picking choi sum off the dim sum cart and taking my first bite.  I immediately thought, this choi sum is so tender, nothing like the choi sum in Hawaii.  That’s when I stopped the cart lady and asked what I was eating.  From that moment on, gai lan became my favorite go to Chinese vegetable.

Both are delicious but I prefer gai lan because it has an almost melt in your mouth feel with a crunch.

Gai  lan is delicious as well as healthy.  The stalks taste very much like broccoli stalks while the dark green leaves have a pleasantly bitter taste that matches perfectly with the light sweetness of the oyster sauce.  This simple vegetable is full of antioxidants, vitamin A, C, calcium and iron. 

So eat your veggies.

CHINESE BROCCOLI (Gai Lan) with Oyster Sauce
1          pound              gai lan, chinese broccoli
3          Tbsp.               water or chicken broth
2          Tbsp.               oyster sauce
1          Tbsp.               dry sherry
½         tsp.                  sugar

Place sauce ingredients in a small pot and bring to a boil.  Set aside until ready to use.

Trim bottoms of the gai lan and cut into bite size pieces or cook whole and slice after it is cooked.  Cook in boiling salted water for 3 minutes.  Drain and pour sauce over it.

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