Tuesday, April 22, 2008
Sauteed Baby Bok Choi With Fresh Mushrooms
Hubby is a great fan of vegetables. He can have his meals without meat but there should be green leafy things on his table every meal time. It has been a family joke that he can sleep happily on any bed made of vegetables. Guess what his favorite green is? The Bok Choi! I can serve this everyday and he will not complain. And that's good news because the Bok Choi is a good source of beta carotene, calcium and folate.
What's even more good news is that since Bok Choi belongs to the cabbage family, it contains cancer-fighting compound common to cruciferous foods (source: Washington Post). Widely considered to be healthy foods, they are high in vitamin C and soluble fibre and contain multiple nutrients with potent anti-cancer properties: diindolylmethane, sulforaphane and selenium (source: Wikipedia).
It was really a surprise and a great delight to find baby Bok Choi vacuum packed in bags at a local grocery (The Landmark Grocery at Trinoma). In this corner of tropics, Bok Chois are common and not expensive. But it is rare to find baby ones. Of course I grabbed several bags knowing that the baby kind will surely be tender and milder in taste than the regular ones.
Bok Chois are so easy to cook. Just saute in hot oil and lots of garlic. Add some soy sauce to taste and you would already have a nice green plate on your table. But for this baby Bok Choi recipe, I added dried scallops and fresh shiitake mushrooms to make it truly special.
This easy-to-prepare dish is truly a must include in your meal planning. Mushrooms, according to many studies also contain cancer-fighting compounds. They contain polysaccharides, especially Lentinan, powerful compounds that help in building immunity. They are a source of Beta Glucan. They also have a protein called lectin, which attacks cancerous cells and prevents them from multiplying (source: Cancare.org).
3 T canola oil
5 T garlic, minced (lessen amount if preferred)
1 small onion, chopped
1/4 C dried scallops (soaked in hot water for an hour, then shredded)
1 bag (around 300 gms) Baby Bok Choi, washed
1/4 C sliced fresh shiitake mushrooms
2 T soy sauce ( or to taste)
freshly ground pepper to taste
dash of sesame oil (optional)
1. Heat up oil in a wok or a skillet. Add the onions. Saute until softened, then add the garlic. Saute until it turns a little golden brown, but not burnt or it will turn bitter.
2. Add the shredded, softened dried scallops. Stir fry for a while. Then add the mushrooms.
3. Add the Baby Bok Choi. Stir fry for a while, around 3 minutes. Season with soy sauce and pepper to taste. Sprinkle with sesame oil before serving.
The children love it because of its "cuteness" factor. Hubby loves it because it is green. I love it because it is easy to cook and super-duper healthy.
I am submitting this recipe to the Cooking to Combat Cancer food event. Almost all the ingredients in this dish (Bok Choi, Mushrooms, Garlic) are cancer-combatting foods. I am practically a newbie in food blogging, having started only in November 23, 2007. Today is a record first. This is the first time I am joining a food blogging event. I am excited to join Cooking To Combat Cancer launched and hosted by Chris of Melecotte, herself a successful cancer survivor. It is a pleasure to be a part of this special food bloggers community who aims to bring more awareness to this dreaded disease. Let us blog together to eat healthier!
As I write this, a dear friend of mine from college days is on my mind. I attended the funeral of her mother last week. Her mother was diagnosed with colon cancer in 2006. They were not blessed to have enough money for the treatments until last year. By then, the cancer had spread to the reproductive system. Her dad became deppressed because there seemed to be no hope. Her dad was then diagnosed with lung cancer end of February, 2008. Even when the doctors gave him more months to live, he died only a month later. Her mom followed 2 weeks after that. The entire family is devastated.
There is ample scientific evidence that negative thoughts and feelings can be harmful to the body. This should be a wake-up call for all of us to stay happy, be optimistic and always look at the positive side of things. Laugh! When you do, you pump more oxygen into your lungs, improve blood flow and boost your immune system.