In The Book of Greens, Portland chef Jenn Louis has an answer for anyone going through a case of kale fatigue. It turns out, there are hundreds of ways to cook and eat greens that never even occurred to us.
Juicy and crisp, bok choy is one of the most refreshing vegetables. And apples happen to be one of the most refreshing, juicy, and crisp fruits. Drawing that parallel inspired me to create this dish. Adding bacon, candied ginger, chile, rice wine vinegar, and soy sauce strikes the perfect sweet, salty, sour, and smoky balance. This makes a wonderful side dish to meaty main dishes like pork or chicken, but it is also great on its own with jasmine rice and a poached egg.
- In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice vinegar, brown sugar, candied ginger, and chile. Stir well to dissolve the sugar. Set aside.
- Place a large sauté pan over medium-high heat and warm the oil. Add the bok choy, cut side down, and sear each side, turning once, until golden and becoming tender, 2 to 4 minutes per side. Decrease the heat if the greens are cooking too quickly or becoming too dark without becoming tender. Season lightly with salt. Remove the greens from the pan and reserve on a plate.
- If pan has become dry, add a thin layer of oil to coat the bottom. Over medium-high heat, add the bacon, onion, and apples. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is translucent, the bacon is becoming crisp, and the apples caramelize, 3 to 4 minutes.
- Return the bok choy to the pan and decrease the heat to medium. Add the reserved soy sauce mixture and simmer gently until the sauce is slightly reduced but not thick, about 2 minutes.
- Lightly season with salt, if needed, and serve immediately.
Reprinted with permission from The Book of Greens by Jenn Louis, copyright © 2017. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
The Book of Greens