Garlic bok choy is one of my go tos ways of preparing greens.
Crunchy bulbs with tender leaves, smothered in a garlicky sauce <3
Sorry it’s been a while since I posted. There were a lot of things going on, lots of life changes in the works. Lots of things I’m excited for, a few things I’m quite sad about. But I’ll get into that in a moment. Firstly, garlic bok choy!
As you’ve seen from other posts, I LOVE bok choy. This lemon tahini bok choy is one of my favourite ways of eating it, and this classic garlic bok choy was a favourite side dish of mine when I was growing up and going to dim sum with my family. Some people like to cut the greens into much smaller pieces, some people just half the bulbs, but I like the happy medium of quartering the bok choy. That way, some of the garlic sauce get stuck in between the layers of the bulbs and gives you this incredible juicy bite when you eat it.
And now onto a life update:
I’ve always been really weird with change, especially when it came to moving homes. Well, it depends on how you look at it. In the past, when I encounter a big change in my life, it takes me about a month or two to adjust. But I always do, and often the change is welcome.
I desperately needed a change when I left home to go to university. I got stuck in a rut when I finished my undergrad and chose to move to Toronto by myself to do my Master’s.When I found myself stuck in a relationship I couldn’t fix, I took off and started fresh outside of the city. Moving for me has always been cathartic, while also being a big bundle of stress. But every single time I’ve moved, it’s always been for the better.
After a lot of consideration, Eddie and I are downsizing.
We’re leaving our beautiful, rented shoebox and moving to a much less glamourous but much more spacious basement. I was reluctant because I’d be giving up on the gigantic gorgeous window that I use for photography (and just general self-care/sanity), a dishwasher, and the most beautiful kitchen I’ve ever had the privilege of using.
But we’d end up saving money, we get parking spaces (!!) and by some sheer luck and family connections, we get double the space.
There are a lot of other small things we’d have to give up, and a few other things we’d gain, and the pros seemed to outweigh the cons, so it looks like I’ll have a new, significantly less beautiful but just as effective kitchen to be cooking out of soon.
And a new space is always a welcome challenge for me to navigate when it comes to photography. This new space has about 4 different places where I could possibly shoot, AND I’d have so much more room for a pantry and my props, so I’m excited. I’m also about 10 minutes closer to Toronto (which sounds negligible, but considering that 10 minutes can shave off 20-30 minutes during rush hour, that’s a pretty big deal.
Anyway, this has been one of the first good days in a long time, so I haven’t really had the energy or inspiration to develop any new and exciting recipes. So here is a simple but super tasty way I love to eat my greens.
Here’s a video version of the recipe if you’re more a visual learner :)
Bok Choy in Garlic Sauce (Vegan & Gluten-Free)
*** If you like your greens super saucy, up this to 1/2 cup broth or 1/2 cup water + 1 1/2 tsp mushroom broth powder
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil (I used olive, but grapeseed, canola, or vegetable oil blend works just great)
- 1 small onion or shallot, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 bulbs of Shanghai or baby bok choy, quartered and washed well
- 1/3 cup vegetable broth*** (I used 1/3 cup water + 1 tsp mushroom broth powder)
- 1 tsp cornstarch
- Salt and pepper to taste
- In a large pan or wok over medium heat, cook onion in oil until translucent. Add garlic and cook just until fragrant (about 1-2 minutes), do not overcook the garlic as burnt garlic tastes bitter.
- Add quartered bok choy and a splash of the vegetable broth (just to start steaming the bok choy and keep the garlic from burning). Stir fry the bok choy until the tops are wilted. If you like your bok choy super tender, continue cooking until bulb-part is soft. I like them to still have a bit of crunch. Cook to your liking.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the remaining vegetable broth and cornstarch to make a slurry. Once the bok choy has cooked to your liking, add the slurry to the pan and stir immediately to coat the greens in sauce. Once thickened, remove from heat and season with salt and pepper to taste. Since I used mushroom broth powder, I didn't need any salt, but if you're using unsalted vegetable broth, you may need to add some salt.
Just made this with shallots instead of onions and it came out great! Super simple and super quick. Thank you Chi Lisa!
Lisa Le says
I always forget to get shallots! Yes they would be totally delicious instead of onion here, great idea :)
tracy cole says
not a vegetarian but love some of the recipes.the blog is quite entertaining.
Delicious! My husband made this recipe over the weekend and it was super tasty. I can’t wait to have it again.
made it today!! super delicious!! Thank you so much!
Angela Maciel says
This looks absolutely perfect and so much delicious… can’t wait to try it out
I followed your recipe which was easy, fast and delicious! A great healthy choice. Thank you.
Looks great! What would this recipe pair well with?
Lisa Le says
I typically eat it with rice and whatever protein I happen to be making that night :) It is a super versatile side-dish, pretty much goes with anything!
Very nice recipe! We love the results and the simplicity.
We used mature bok choy since we just received some through our local CSA. Although not as aesthetically appealing as the baby version, the taste was great.
Although we did use the cornstarch, we will use arrowroot or a roux next time as the thickener, given the very poor health profile of cornstarch.
Since we don’t have vegan mushroom broth (though plenty of vegetable and “not chick’n” cubes), we plan to re-hydrate mushroom pieces (shiitake ?), using the water and the mushroom pieces added to a veggie broth. We think that would go well with this recipe.
Lee Yeager says
I sauteed the onion in a little broth, added a sprinkle of hot pepper flakes and enjoyed learning how to cook and enjoy this lovely green. Thank you.
I’ve made this several times. One way to change it up is to grill the bok choy and then add it to the pan to coat with onion and garlic sauce to finish it off. Gives it little different texture and light smokey t taste.
This sounds great, and I’d like to make it tonight. I have very small baby bok choy. Can you tell me in weight how much I should use please?
Lisa Le says
Hi Shellie, I don’t have any weight measurements unfortunately, but I’d say 2 baby bok choy is about the same as one shanghai bok choy in terms of volume? So use 8-10 baby bok choy?