Bok choy is a type of Chinese cabbage especially adored in my house for its clean, refreshing flavor and texture. It comes in big and little sizes, and while the big version is great chopped and stir-fried, I love to steam the babies. They’re so pleasing all tucked into the steamer together, and steaming the whole heads preserves the juiciness I especially love about this vegetable. Baby bok choy heads can also be cut in half and roasted this keeps the hearts juicy but increases the crisp of the leaves. Just halve them, rub with oil, and roast in a 450°F oven for 15 minutes.
- Yield: 4 Servings
- 6 heads baby bok choy
- 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
- 1 tablespoon Asian sesame oil
- 2 teaspoons tamari or soy sauce
- Separate the levels of your steamer pot. Fill the lower level with a few inches of water and set the pot over high heat to bring the water to a boil. Tuck the bok choy heads into the upper level of the steamer in as close to a single layer as possible. (If your babies are big, you can also cut them in half lengthwise.) Insert the upper level into the lower and cover the pot. Steam until the heads are bright green and tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
- While the bok choy steams, prepare the sauce. Heat a small skillet or saucepan set over medium heat. Toast the sesame seeds in the skillet, stirring frequently, until they color and begin to pop, 2 to 3 minutes. Add the sesame oil and tamari, and heat just until the sauce is warmed through, 1 to 2 minutes.
- Use tongs to carefully transfer the bok choy heads to a wide serving bowl, shaking each head in the pot to drain the excess water. Spoon the seeds and sauce over the bok choy.