Alright, so it turns out that once you fall off the wagon, it’s hard to get back on. My picture-of-dinner-every-night experiment was really fun for me, maybe not that exciting for you guys, but life got in the way. I will say I have been both cooking more and eating out more than I did in the past (leftovers tend to go for lunch these days), so sometime soon I’ll post a recap of pictures I took in the interim.
But that’s not what today is about. Today is about celebrating a delicious, beautiful, tender leafy green: baby bok choy. Because I don’t grow my own bok choy, I have no idea if Baby Bok Choy is actually the younger version of the grown-up thing, or if it’s a different plant species, but it tastes lemony and wonderful and can be eaten all by itself. Also performs nicely in a quesadilla, if you’re into that. And yesterday I decided to make a soup out of it. Yayyyyyy soup!
NOTE: I tagged this post as vegetarian/vegan. If you are a veggie or a vegan, consider using vegetable stock rather than chicken stock in the recipe below. Everything else complies with those dietary standards. Now, then:
Baby Bok Choy Soup
1 to 2 cups uncooked noodles
2 to 3 cups homemade chicken stock (I guess they also sell it at stores)1 tbsp olive oil
3 baby bok choys
2 cloves garlic
1/2 C frozen peas (or 1 cup fresh pea pods)
1/2 tsp coarse-ground black pepper
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper (optional)
2 dashes soy sauce (optional)
Step 1: Assemble ingredients (see above). Then, using a 1:1 ratio of stock to water (I ended up with about 6 cups of liquid total), heat your liquid base until boiling.
(An aside: I make chicken stock by buying a package of chicken breasts at the store, and then poaching them in simmering water with a chopped onion, garlic, oregano, salt, and copious amounts of black pepper for about twenty minutes until they’re just cooked. I use just enough water to cover them in the pot, and then I end up with like four cups of shredded chicken and 3 to 5 cups of stock. The shredded chicken can be frozen, stock lasts in the fridge up to a week probably.)
Step 2: Add minced garlic, pepper(s), soy sauce, and noodles of your choosing to the pot as soon as it boils, then bring down to a low boil. While you’re waiting, chop stuff! Start by mincing the garlic, then chopping the bok choy, and pour out some frozen peas. If you want to use fresh pea pods, I’m sure that would work equally well.
Step 3: Time it so you’re adding the vegetables when the noodles are still pretty al dente, 7 to 9 minutes for most pastas. You don’t want the veggies to be overcooked, so leave at medium-low until the broth fully reheats, about five minutes. Stir pretty regularly to turn over the vegetables and make sure everything is evenly heated.
Step 4: Serve while hot! I recommend adding a little rooster sauce if you live on the edge, but the soup tastes just fine without it. And your stomach will be so happy to see all those vegetables!