Thursday, July 05, 2007

Garlic Chives 韭菜 2 ways

Have you ever gone to the market with a list of items and come home with extra stuff that you didn't intend to buy, but it looked or sounded good at the time? I was going for some shrimp and met this charming seafood salesperson who informed me that the scallops were flown overnight from the Magdalena Bay of Baja California – near Cabo San Lucas and how they were responsibly harvested by local divers using underwater breathing bells to help them hand-harvest the tiny bay scallops. According to her, this was a traditional and sustainable fishing method perfectly suited to the shallow, protected bay, and it contain no tri-polyphosphates, preservatives, or added water (unlike most scallops.) You guess it.... I bought some scallops too! Guess I can't say no sometimes...

Garlic chives is also called Chinese chives, Chinese leek, Ku chai, Oriental garlic chives or, in Japanese, Nira. When Lily visited a little while back, she was so nice to bring some garlic chives from her garden. Shared the big bunch from Sumi, and used the rest to make a traditional garlic chives omelette for the kids the next day. Since then, I have been thinking of garlic chives! Bought 2 garlic chives plant for the nursery, and planted them. Then I also bought a bunch of garlic chives from the asian market, and made a garlic chives and scallops (the added ingredient) stir fry. Thanks Lily for the garlic chives fever. LOL!
Garlic Chives and Bay Scallops Stir-fry
1 Tbs vegetable oil
1 lb garlic chives, cut into 1 1/2 in. pieces
1 tsp dried chili flakes (optional)
1 lb bay scallops
1/2 tsp organic salt-free seasoning or sea salt to taste

Heat wok over high heat until a drop of water vaporizes instantly upon contact. Add oil, swirling to coat wok evenly, and heat until hot and just smoking. Add chives and red pepper flakes and stir-fry, letting chives rest on bottom and sides of wok several seconds between stirs, until chives are tender, about 2 mins. Add scallops and stir fry for another 1-2 mins or till chives are slightly brown. Stir in salt. Serve over rice.

Above recipe adapted from Gourmet.


Anonymous said...

wah ... I haven't had garlic chives for donkey years. Today I went to the Chinese shop looking for garlic chives but they don't have it :( When I want it they don't have it. When I don't need it, I see them every time in the shop.

Anonymous said...

LOL! Yes I know! I went to market yesterday with 2 items on list, and came back with 5 bags full! Btw, what did you make with the shrimp???

Little Corner of Mine said...

Oh, I love garlic chives omelette too!

Anonymous said...

To do it 2 ways, must be a lot of chives being used. I like chives in ku chai kueh (a kind of Teochew kueh). There is also a white version of chives, which they usually stir-fry with prawns in some Chinese restaurants. Love the latter too :)

East Meets West Kitchen said...

Hi Cooking ninja,
LOL! Happens to me too! That's why I bought some chives plants to grow. :)

You will just have to wait til I post that..akan datang ya! :)

Hey C, yeah, they're yummy! You have to move closer! :)

Hi Tigerfish,
Oooo, I like ku chai kueh too! Haven't had the white version yet though...

WokandSpoon said...

I loooovveee garlic chives esp. in char kuay teow! The only problem with the chives is that you can't keep them too long in the fridge - I find that they get smelly ;-)

Lee Ping said...

My husband would like this. He loves Garlic Chives. But he can only eat it with egg white because he has very high cholesterol. :)

Indonesia Eats said...

I love garlic chives. I usually cook it for soup or stir fry