Sunday, May 4, 2014

Chinese Spinach with ginger, garlic and green onions

Chinese Spinach
When I drive up to Portland I always stop by Fubon (Asian grocer) to restock my pantry and see what’s fresh.  They have a vast selection of the usual suspects like bok choy and gai lan, as well as, many seasonal varieties that I have not seen or heard of before.  Today’s discovery was- Chinese Spinach.

I picked up a bunch to examine it and thought, what makes this different than Popeyes spinach?  It looks very much like regular spinach. The big question was, how does it taste? I had to give it a try.

 First I tore off a piece and ate it raw.  It had a nice sweet flavor.  This was a good start.  Then I had to decide how to prepare it.  I settled on a simple blend of ginger, garlic and green onions.  This was a good choice for the spinach and would work well with any Asian green.

What I discovered is that Chinese spinach is sweet, tender and has a clean finish. It taste exactly like spinach, but doesn’t have that gritty feel or that bitter after taste that spinach has.   Don’t get me wrong.  I really like spinach, but I hate that feel in my mouth.  It’s hard to explain. It’s sort of a love hate relationship.  Am I the only one?

***All you need to do to clean them is to cut off the root section and wash in cold tap water.

1              pound   Chinese spinach, cleaned
1              Tbsp.     oil (you can use sesame oil for added flavor)
1              slice       ginger, minced
1              clove     garlic, minced
2              stalks     green onion, chopped
¼             tsp.        kosher salt

Blanch spinach in salted water until it is just wilted.  Drain.

Place a skillet over LOW heat.  Add 1 Tbsp. oil and cook ginger, garlic and salt until fragrant, but not browned.
Add green onions and bring heat up to HIGH.  Stir to mix with the ginger and garlic.
Add blanched spinach and toss.  Keep tossing to coat all the spinach (about 2 min). 


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