This particular dish of Bok Choy with Braised Mushrooms was put together as a side dish for Flank Steak braised with Lemon Juice and Capers. It is definitely Western in concept as it uses thyme and white wine as flavorings, but it could still be used as a dish in a Chinese meal, even without substituting any of the ingredients.
The small Shanghai variety of Bok Choy is being used for this recipe but any other type can be used as long as you section it into pieces more or less as pictured above
Braising the mushrooms in chicken stock along with the seasonings gives them a great flavor boost. You can use a vegetable oil here, but duck fat, if you have it, works especially well.
Once the mushrooms have absorbed all the braising medium, additional flavor is added by frying them until they become a nice golden brown and even develop a little crispness along some of the edges.
The Bok Choy is added in two parts … First the thicker white/light green stems, and then the darker leaves just before removing from the heat. You don’t want to cook the leaves for too long as they will lose their nice bright color.
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Bok Choy with Braised Mushrooms
- 3 – 4 Shanghai Bok Choy;
- 1/2 lb. sliced Button Mushrooms;
- 2 large cloves of Garlic peeled;
- 1 pinch each Salt and dried Thyme;
- 1 – 2 pinches Black Pepper;
- 3/4 cup Chicken Stock;
- 1 pinch Sugar;
- 2 – 3 tablespoons White Wine;
- Prepare the Bok Choy by slicing each in half lengthways and then section the halves, trimming away the hard root parts. Make the sections about the thickness of a man’s thumb and keep the white/light green parts separate from the dark green leaves.
- Crush the garlic cloves with the side of a knife and sauté them in hot oil (or fat of choice) until they release their aroma.
- Add the Mushroom slices, season with salt and pepper and thyme, and stir to coat them with the cooking fat.
- Add the stock and let it bubble at a moderate simmer until it has all been absorbed, and then remove the garlic cloves.
- Turn up the heat and continue to sauté the mushrooms until they take on a golden color here and then and then remove them from the pan.
- If necessary, add a little more fat to the pan, turn up to moderately high heat and add the white part of the Bok Choy. Sprinkle over the sugar, tossing as you fry, and when the white parts are starting to soften add back the mushrooms.
- Continue stirring until the mushrooms are hot and add the wine. When the steam rises, throw in the Bok Choy leaves and toss quickly until they are bright green and just beginning to wilt.
- Plate and serve immediately.