1 bunch Chinese broccoli
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 teaspoons Asian (toasted) sesame oil
Rinse broccoli. Pull off and discard any yellow or damaged leaves; trim off and discard stem ends. If stalks have a tough, fibrous skin, peel it off. If stalks are thicker than 1/2 inch, cut lengthwise to that size. Cut stalks, including leaves and florets, into 2- to 3-inch lengths.
In a 5- to 6-quart covered pan over high heat, bring about 2 quarts water to a boil. Add broccoli and cook, uncovered, just until barely tender to bite, 3 to 5 minutes. Drain. Pour onto a platter.
In a small pitcher or bowl, mix soy sauce and sesame oil. Drizzle over broccoli.
Chinese Broccoli (Gai Lan)
- 1 bunch Chinese broccoli, trimmed
- 2 tablespoons white sugar
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger root
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
Bring a large pot of lightly salted water to a boil. Add the Chinese broccoli and cook uncovered until just tender, about 4 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Meanwhile, whisk the sugar, cornstarch, soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil, hoisin sauce, ginger, and garlic together in a small saucepan over medium heat until thickened and no longer cloudy, 5 to 7 minutes. Toss the broccoli in the sauce and serve.
This Chinese Broccoli recipe is so simple and delicious! In Thailand, vegetable stir-fries tend to be Chinese in origin (Chinese cooking is a huge influence). If you can't find Chinese broccoli, our own western-style broccoli works well too – just be sure to leave on a good amount of the stem to get the texture and crunch that is desirable in Asian vegetables. Includes vegan instructions too. (About.com/Thai Food)
- SERVES: 2-4
- Chinese broccoli (gai lan), OR brccoli rabe (rapini), OR Western-style broccoli, 12-20 stalks or enough for 2-4 people
- 1+1/2 Tbsp. finely chopped garlic
- 1/2 to 1 fresh red chili, minced, OR up to 1/2 tsp. dried crushed chili
- 2-3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
- STIR-FRY SAUCE:
- 3 Tbsp. sherry OR cooking sherry
- 1/4 cup chicken OR vegetable/faux chicken stock
- 1 +1/2 Tbsp. oyster sauce (I like Golden Dragon brand) OR Lee Kum Kee Vegetarian Stir-Fry Sauce
- 1-2 tsp. brown sugar (broccoli rabe will need 2 tsp.)
- Optional: 1/3 tsp. cornstarch dissolved in 2 Tbsp. cool water
- Thoroughly rinse your greens well to remove any grit and let drain in a colander while you prepare the stir-fry sauce.
- In a cup, mix together the sherry, stock, oyster sauce (or stir-fry sauce), and brown sugar. Set aside.
- Heat a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add 2-3 Tbsp. oil and swirl around, then add the garlic and chili (if using). Stir-fry 30 seconds to 1 minutes (avoid over-browning the garlic – you want it still white in color, or it will taste bitter).
- Add the Chinese broccoli plus 2-3 Tbsp. of the stir-fry sauce you've made. Stir-fry until the wok becomes dry, then add 2-3 Tbsp. more stir-fry sauce. Cook in this way 4-5 minutes.
- Add all the remaining stir-fry sauce and reduce heat to medium-low, so that the dish is gently simmering. Simmer until you're happy with the cooked texture of the broccoli. Tip: the stems should still taste crunchy (not too soft or soggy). If you'd like a thicker sauce, add the cornstarch dissolved in water mixture, and simmer 30 seconds to 1 minute.
- Remove from heat and taste-test. Add a little more sugar if too bitter (broccoli rabe is more bitter than Chinese broccoli), or a little more oyster sauce (or veg. stir-fry sauce) if not salty or flavorful enough. If too salty, add a squeeze of lime or lemon juice.
- To serve, tilt your vegetables out of the wok into a shallow serving bowl and pour any remaining sauce from the wok overtop (including the garlic bits). Serve with rice and ENJOY!