Bok Choy

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Bok choy is a traditional stir-fry vegetable from China and is an excellent source of vitamins A, B-complex, and C.

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How to Prepare:

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Rinse bok choy, separate leaves from the thick white stem, and chop both into 2 inch wide diagonal chunks.

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How to Store:

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Wrap bok choy in a damp towel or put it in a plastic bag and place in the hydrator drawer of the refrigerator. Store for up to 1 week. Leaves will lose integrity and wilt if allowed to dry out.

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How to Cook:

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Bok choy can be enjoyed steamed, stir-fried, or raw.

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Information adapted from From Asparagus to Zucchini

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Recipes

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Stir-Fried Bok Choy with Ginger and Garlic

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Ingredients

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  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 8 cups chopped fresh bok choy
  • 2 tablespoons reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • Salt and ground black pepper
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Preparation
nHeat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and ginger and cook 1 minute. Add bok choy and soy sauce cook 3 to 5 minutes, until greens are wilted and stalks are crisp-tender. Season, to taste, with salt and black pepper.

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Recipe courtesy of The Food Network

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Udon Soup with Bok Choy and Poached Egg

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Ingredients

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  • 4 to 5 cups vegetable or chicken broth
  • 2 whole star anise
  • 1 stick whole cinnamon
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 (7-ounce) packages fresh or frozen udon noodles
  • 4 to 5 large bok choy leaves, sliced into ribbons
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons soy sauce
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Preparation

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Bring the chicken broth to a simmer in a medium saucepan. (The broth should be about 2 inches deep in the pan.) Add the star anise and cinnamon and simmer for 5 to 10 minutes to infuse the broth with the spices. When finished, use a slotted spoon to remove the spices.

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Crack the eggs into separate measuring cups and slip them into the simmering broth, one at a time. Cook for 2 minutes, then add the noodles and bok choy. Stir very gently to submerge the noodles and bok choy, but so as not to break the eggs. Cook for another 2 minutes, until the whites of the eggs are completely set but the yolks are still loose.

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Off the heat, gently stir in the soy sauce and the spring onions. Taste and add more soy sauce if necessary. Divide the soup between two bowls and eat immediately.

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Recipe courtesy of The Kitchn

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Spicy Cauliflower, Bok Choy, and Shrimp Stir-Fry with Coconut

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Ingredients

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  • 1 tablespoon safflower oil
  • ¼ large head cauliflower, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • ½ large head bok choy, trimmed and sliced into 1-inch strips (about 8 ounces)
  • ½ pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon sambal oelek or other Asian chili sauce, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon agave syrup
  • 2 teaspoons fish sauce
  • ½ cup fresh basil leaves, plus more for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened flaked coconut, toasted
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Preparation

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Heat 1-½ teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add cauliflower, and reduce heat to medium. Cook until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Add bok choy, and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 8 minutes. Transfer vegetables to a plate, and loosely tent with foil.

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Heat 1 teaspoon oil in same skillet over medium-high heat. Add shrimp, and cook until they begin to turn opaque, about 2 minutes. Flip shrimp and, using a wooden spoon, push them to one side, and add remaining ½ teaspoon oil to exposed area. Add garlic, and cook, stirring, until very fragrant but not brown, about 1 minute.

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Toss garlic with shrimp. Stir in sambal oelek, agave syrup, and fish sauce. Add vegetables, and cook until heated through, about 30 seconds. Add basil, and serve immediately. Top with coconut flakes and more basil.

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Recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart 

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Bok Choy and Kale Fried Rice With Fried Garlic Recipe

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Ingredients

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  • 1 whole head of garlic, peeled
  • Kosher salt
  • ¼ cup vegetable oil
  • 3 cups day-old cooked jasmine or short grain rice 
  • 2 cups chopped kale (about 4 ounces)
  • 2 cups chopped bok choy (about 4 ounces)
  • 1 Thai bird's eye chili, finely minced
  • ¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon soy sauce
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Preparation

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For the Fried Garlic: Transfer garlic to the bowl of a food processor or mini food processor. Pulse until garlic is very finely chopped but not a paste, about 12 short pulses, scraping down sides as necessary. Set aside 2 teaspoons and toss remaining garlic with a pinch of salt in a small bowl.

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Set a fine mesh strainer over a heat-proof bowl. Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add garlic and cook, stirring. Garlic should maintain a gently bubble. If bubbling vigorously, reduce heat. Cook until garlic is light golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes, then immediately strain. Transfer garlic to a paper towel-lined plate to cool. Reserve fried garlic and oil separately.

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For the Fried Rice: Heat 1 tablespoon garlic oil in a wok over high heat until smoking. Add the kale and bok choy, season with salt, and stir-fry until the vegetables are bright green and barely wilted, about 1 minute. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.

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Heat 1 more tablespoon garlic oil in the wok over high heat until smoking. Add reserved raw minced garlic and bird's eye chili and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 15 seconds. Add rice and stir immediately, breaking up any large chunks and adding remaining garlic oil as necessary to prevent sticking.

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Season rice with salt and white pepper, then add soy sauce. Return kale and bok choy to rice and toss to combine. Transfer to warm serving bowl and sprinkle generously with fried garlic. Serve immediately.

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Recipe courtesy of Serious Eats

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Bok Choy and Radishes Recipe

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Ingredients

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  • 1 head bok choy
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 12 radishes, thinly sliced
  • 1 shallot, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon lemon-pepper seasoning
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
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Preparation

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Cut off and discard root end of bok choy, leaving stalks with leaves. Cut green leaves from stalks. Cut leaves into 1-in. slices; set aside. Cut white stalks into 1-in. pieces. In a large skillet, cook bok choy stalks in butter and oil for 3-5 minutes or until crisp-tender. Add the radishes, shallot, lemon-pepper, salt and reserved leaves; cook and stir for 3 minutes or until heated through.

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Recipe courtesy of Taste of Home

Check out our new line of apparel

In collaboration with The Image Shoppe, Centralian Shop Unlimited, and Local First, Mayor Bliss created this line of apparel so that she and other Grand Rapidians could show off our fair city. The two designs boast what we know to be some of our key economic strengths: medicine, manufacturing, sustainable business practices, and, of course, brewing beer.

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The Handcrafted GR design (available as a t-shirt and light-weight hoodie) combines depictions of an Eames chair, stethoscope, the Grand River, a pint glass and growler, an artist's pallet, the historic 6th Street Bridge and none other than our local Calder sculpture La Grande VitesseThe BEGR design (also available as a t-shirt and light-weight hoodie) creates an optical illusion. Whether you see BEGR or BEER, this design is all about Grand Rapids pride. The front features two of GR's most well-known attributes – La Grande Vitesse and good beer! The back features three others: Progress, Growth, and Grand River.

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The designs were debuted at the 13th annual Local First Street Party.  The online store is live an ready to receive orders. Check it out at www.localfirst.com/discover/store

The Wheelhouse offers a ‘chef-focused culinary adventure on the plate’

The culinary scene in downtown Grand Rapids recently expanded once again with the opening of a new eatery near Van Andel Arena.

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On June 1, the owners of Twisted Rooster and Crooked Goose cut the ribbon on The Wheelhouse, a ‘New American’-themed bistro located on the ground floor of the $45 million Arena Place development project.

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The nearly 300-seat restaurant features patio seating, a semi-private dining room with sophisticated video presentation capability, and a bar with 24 taps. “The atmosphere is urban, fitting of a downtown destination restaurant which suits our rapidly expanding city,” said Brittany Wakefield, the Casual Dining Brand Manager for the restaurant group.

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Diners can choose from a menu that The Wheelhouse describes as a ‘chef-focused culinary adventure on the plate’. It emphasizes seasonal selections that highlights bold and fresh ingredients from local Michigan vendors. Specialties consist of a unique variety of open-faced sandwiches called tartines, like the Three Little Pigs (prosciutto mousse, candied bacon and pork cracklings), along with updated and reimagined shareables like Belgian-style mussels.

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The menu was developed by Chef Andrew Alcid, whose favorite items include a unique take on a caprese salad called the Burrata Fireball, and the CB & J Sandwich (cashew butter, fig jam, goat cheese and candied bacon). Traditional items like steak & frites, Diver scallops and spaghetti carbonara are also available, in addition to comfort foods like the buttermilk battered hot chicken sandwich.

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On the artisan cocktail side, featured drinks like The Pinto utilize local ingredients like vodka from Long Road Distillers and Two James absinthe from Detroit. The Motor City Mule boasts D-Town’s Valentin vodka mixed with lime juice and ginger beer. Seventeen Michigan craft beers are also available on tap at any one time.

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The Wheelhouse is open for dinner daily and lunch Mondays through Fridays. The restaurant’s website also lists more than 60 Michigan vendors and suppliers that it utilizes on a regular basis.

Rhubarb

Profile

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Rhubarb is one of the first spring offerings of the garden. It is a vegetable related to the dock plant, a common weed. Nutritionally, rhubarb is high in vitamins A and C and a variety of minerals, particularly calcium. Rhubarb is also believed to be a beneficial blood purifier and digestive aid.

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How to Prepare

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Cut off leaves, rinse and chop the stems.

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How to Store

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Store wrapped in a damp towel or in a plastic bag in the refrigerator for up to a week. Stems will soften and shrivel as they dehydrate. For long-term storage, rhubarb may be frozen either raw or cooked. It should be washed, chopped, and drained. Place in airtight containers and freeze.

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How to Cook

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Rhubarb can be eaten raw, blended in a smoothie, roasted, or dried.

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Information adapted from From Asparagus to Zucchini

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Recipes

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Strawberry/Rhubarb Crumb Pie

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Ingredients

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  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¾ pound rhubarb rib, cut into ½-inch pieces, or sliced frozen rhubarb (about 3 cups)
  • 1 pint fresh strawberries, halved
  • 1 unbaked pie shell (9 inches)
  • ¾ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • ½ cup quick-cooking or old-fashioned oats
  • ½ cup cold butter, cubed
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Preparation

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In a large bowl, beat egg. Beat in the sugar, flour and vanilla until well blended. Gently stir in rhubarb and strawberries. Pour into pastry shell. For topping, in a small bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar and oats; cut in butter until crumbly. Sprinkle over fruit. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees; bake for 35 minutes longer or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool on a wire rack.

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Recipe courtesy of Taste of Home

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Ruby Port and Rhubarb Risotto with Sugared Strawberries

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Ingredients

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  • 2 cups sliced strawberries
  • ¾ cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar, divided
  • ⅔ cup ruby port
  • 1-½ cups chopped rhubarb
  • 3-½ cups water, divided
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ⅛ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup uncooked Carnaroli or Arborio rice or other medium-grain rice
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup (2 ounces) mascarpone cheese
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Preparation

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Combine strawberries and 1 tablespoon sugar in a small bowl. Set aside. Combine port and ¼ cup sugar in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil; cook 7 minutes or until slightly thickened. Stir in rhubarb; cook 7 minutes. Bring 3-½ cups water to a simmer in a small saucepan (do not boil). Keep warm over low heat. Combine milk, remaining ½ cup sugar, salt, and nutmeg in a separate saucepan; bring to a simmer (do not boil).

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Keep warm over low heat. Melt butter in a large Dutch oven. Add rice to pan; cook 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in 1 cup hot water; cook 3 minutes or until liquid is nearly absorbed, stirring constantly. Add remaining water, ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of water is absorbed before adding the next.

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Add milk mixture, ½ cup at a time, stirring constantly until each portion of milk is absorbed before adding the next (about 30 minutes total). Stir in vanilla; cook 1 minute. Remove from heat; stir in mascarpone until cheese melts. Place about ½ cup risotto in each of 8 bowls. Top each serving with 2 tablespoons port mixture and ¼ cup strawberry mixture.

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Recipe courtesy of My Recipes

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Pork Chops with Rhubarb-Cherry Sauce

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Ingredients

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  • ½ cup dried cherries
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ cup finely chopped onion
  • 8 to 10 ounces rhubarb, ends trimmed, cut crosswise into ½-inch pieces (2 cups)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 4 pork loin chops, (each ½ inch thick and 6 to 8 ounces)
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Preparation

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In a small bowl, combine cherries with vinegar and ¼ cup hot water; let stand 10 minutes to soften. In a small saucepan, heat 1 teaspoon oil over medium-low heat. Add onion; cook until softened, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes. To the saucepan, add cherry mixture, rhubarb, and sugar; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer until rhubarb has softened, 5 to 8 minutes.

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Stir in nutmeg; season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat; keep warm. Generously season both sides of pork chops with salt and pepper. In a large skillet, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Cook pork (in two batches, if necessary, to avoid crowding the pan) until browned and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Serve topped with warm sauce.

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Recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart

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Rhubarb Mojito

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Ingredients

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  • ½ lime, cut into pieces, plus 2 lime wedges
  • 10 mint leaves
  • Ice
  • 2 ounces vodka
  • 1 ounce raspberry vodka
  • 1 ounce Cointreau or other triple sec
  • 1 ounce Rhubarb Syrup
  • 1 long, thin slice of rhubarb stalk
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Preparation

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In a cocktail shaker, muddle the lime pieces and mint. Add ice, the vodkas, Cointreau and Rhubarb Syrup and shake well. Strain into an ice-filled rocks glass; garnish with the lime wedges and rhubarb.

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Recipe courtesy of Food and Wine

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Spiced Braised Rhubarb

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Ingredients

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  • 1-½ lb. rhubarb, trimmed and cut into 2 inch pieces on an angle
  • 1 cup fresh orange juice
  • ¼ cup honey
  • ½ tsp. kosher salt
  • 8 pods green cardamom
  • 2 whole star anise
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise, seeds scraped and reserved
  • 1 (½ -inch) piece ginger, peeled and thickly sliced crosswise
  • Yogurt or vanilla ice cream, for serving
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Preparation

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Heat oven to 400 degrees. Mix together rhubarb, orange juice, honey, salt, cardamom, star anise, vanilla bean and seeds, and ginger in a 9 in x 13 in baking dish. Bake, stirring occasionally, until rhubarb is tender, 14-16 minutes. Let cool to room temperature. Serve over yogurt or ice cream, if you like.

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Recipe courtesy of Savuer