Chinese cabbage is also known as nappa cabbage or hakusai. Nappa in Japanese means a leafy vegetable and stems from the word happa that means leaf. Due to the mild flavor and a crunchy yet soft texture, the Chinese cabbage is extremely versatile and absorbs the flavors of any added sauce. It is also regularly used as a healthy filler in dumplings, adds texture in soups and is a good addition to any stir-fry. It also makes great Asian pickles, most notably, the Korean kim chee. The other benefit is that it is very reasonably priced so it’s economical. More reason to use this vegetable!
So this week, I’m going to focus on the recipes on how to use the Chinese Cabbage.
Today’s recipe is a simple stir-fry. This is an easy dish with a very mild flavor and uses readily available ingredients. Since it is quick to put together, it’s good when you need just one more dish to serve. It’s what I call an everyday home-style recipe.
Chinese Cabbage Stir-Fry
5 leaves Chinese cabbage – chopped into bite size pieces
½ onion – sliced into crescent shapes
1 carrot – sliced
10 mushrooms – sliced (any type you have on hand such as button or shiitake)
3 chicken tenderloins – sliced
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon sake
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 clove chopped garlic
1 inch chopped ginger
½ chicken stock
Salt to taste
In Asian cooking, always marinate the meat first to absorb the flavors and keep the meat tender. Place the sliced chicken in a bowl and add soy sauce, sake and cornstarch. Mix and set aside. Chop all your other vegetables and have them ready.
In a hot wok or frying pan, heat and spread with oil. Once the pan is hot, add the chicken and cook until it is white and remove to a plate. Add a bit more oil and add garlic and ginger. Cook until there is a slight aroma, then add the onions and stir-fry until translucent. Add the other vegetables; carrots, mushrooms and then Chinese cabbage. Once it looks nearly done, return the chicken to the pan and stir-fry together, add salt and chicken stock.
Check in for more Chinese cabbage recipes this week!