Bok Choy soup is a quick and delicious soup! It is highly nutritious, hydrating, and quite versatile. Just a few ingredients and it will taste like you entered a gentle sit down, in the heart of china. The natural look of the whole leaves of the Bok Choy will no doubt let you and your family know that what they are getting is fresh and healthy.
Bok Choy Soup
Bok Choy soup is a simple dish that uses Bok Choy, and white button mushrooms as its primary ingredients. Bok Choy is a vegetable from china that has been cultivated by humans for the last 1500 years.
Bok Choy is a brassica vegetable so it is closely related to broccoli, brussels sprouts, and cabbage.
Brassica vegetables are notably high if fiber, and antioxidants due to high amounts of vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin K and other micronutrients and tocopherols.
Bok Choy is a cold weather crop and is fairly easy to grow as long as the weather does not get too hot. Bok choy will bolt in hot weather. Bolting is the process where the plant decides that it is time to start producing seeds. So it sends up a larger stock that produces flowers, and then eventually produces seeds.
When a brassica bolts, it produces large amounts of a bitter substance and it makes your greens less mild, less tender, and for some, less enjoyable.
How To Make Bok Choy Soup:
To put it simply, you will be making a simple broth, and then boiling vegetables in it. This soup does not have to be difficult or complicated. It consists of merely a few ingredients and does not require any more cooking skill than boiling water.
Pour 2 quarts of water into your pot. You can use more, or less, depending on how many people are eating, but i figure this half gallon of soup would feed around 2 adults and 2 children.
For the broth for this recipe, I am using chicken broth. You can use any broth which suits your fancy. Beef broth will be a little bit more of a deep savor and the chicken broth will be more light. If you make your own bone broth, That would be completely optimal for this recipe.
Follow the instructions on the back of the container of broth concentrate that you will be using.
Add the necessary amount of broth concentrate to you water and stir it up good.
Keep heating up your water and while it is coming to a boil, we will move on to the next process.
Prepare your vegetables:
You will more than likely have bought a whole Bok Choy plant from your produce section. If they are small Bok Choy plants, you can just drop the whole thing in there. Say, if the entire Bok Choy plant is under 6-8 inches long.
If you Bok Choy is over 10-12 inches long, then you will want to break down your Bok Choy plants by removing the leaves from the center stock.
Remove the bottom couple of inches of the individual Bok Choy leaves. The bottom portion of these larger leaves is a little bit tough. They are perfectly edible and worthy to be placed in the soup, but since we have the choice. I normally remove the base and give the bottom of the leaves to my pigs.
Now that you have your whole Bok Choy leaves, removed from the stem of the plant, and the bottom portion removed, your last steps in the process will be to wash your greens, and then slice them to the size that you want them to be.
I always leave them whole! I rarely slice my leaves into smaller portions because I personally like the look and mouth feel of the whole leaf. It really has a good look to it when you can put a whole leaf in your mouth.
For this simple Bok Choy recipe, I am using some store bought White Button Mushrooms. But, you can use whichever kind of mushrooms you like. Or none at all. It doesn’t matter, as long as this Bok Choy Soup has everything in it that you like, and nothing that you don’t like.
Generally, I would go out and harvest wild mushrooms to add to a soup like this, but my wife very much likes the white buttons, and so the wife gets what the wife wants. She loves wild mushrooms all the more, but it is quite easy to acquire store bought mushrooms so why not?
You will notice little bits of dirt on your store bought mushrooms. This is substrate left over from the growing process of these mushrooms. If you have wild harvested mushrooms, then you will be doing the exact same thing. Only difference is that you will be doing it with natures substrate.
Whenever you are going to clean mushrooms, with a few as an exception, you will not want to run them under water to clean them. Mushrooms are highly porous, and will absorb much water into their interior. Nobody like soggy mushrooms.
Soggy mushrooms tend to have more of an undesirable quality than a perfectly fresh, not overly wet mushroom.
So to get the dirt off of your mushrooms, wet a paper towel and begin using the wet portion to gently rub away the dirt off of the surface of the mushroom. This allows you to remove the dirt on the outside of the mushroom without exposing your mushrooms to too much moisture.
You mushrooms should look like this when you are done washing them. Nice and clean, and not at all soggy.
After you have cleaned up your mushrooms. Slice them to your desired size that you want you bite of mushroom to be. You really can’t go wrong here because mushrooms are delicious.
You can leave them whole, although they will take longer to cook, and will take longer to cool down, There is something special about putting a whole mushroom in your mouth. Almost as if that mushroom was grown just for you. WHICH IT WAS!
Or cut them in half, or slice them fairly thin, which is what I have done here. They will cook quick this way, and they will also be a good sized bite. Thin slicing is the way to go if you want to make a soup very quickly.
Your broth does not even have to be boiling yet! Toss your Bok Choy and mushrooms in your pot of broth.
If the broth has not come to a boil yet, wait for it to come to a full boil, then turn down your heat until your vegetables are at a good simmer. You will go ahead and want to let your vegetables cook for 5 to 10 minutes before you dish up.
I like to have my vegetables half cooked, and half raw. I like the crunch and body of the half cooked vegetables. You can try them this way and if you don’t like them, then you can boil them the rest of the way.
Otherwise if you are a normal person and like to have your vegetables completely cooked, simply boil them until everything is tender enough to poke a fork through.
After your vegetables are done cooking, I like to throw a knob of butter in my soup. Butter is so delicious in soup and it mixes with the broth and just adds a most desirable flavor and aroma.
Just look at that savory boiled dinner!
You can add salt and pepper to your liking here. It looks great and taste great as well.
How To Grow Bok Choy:
Bok Choy is quite easy to grow. They do not like it when it is too hot, nor do they like when it is too cold.
Sow in the spring after fear of spring frost has passed, sow in the fall a couple of months before the first frost is supposed to happen.
Direct sow seeds into the ground, final spacing of plants should be 7 inches.
Bok choy is in the brassica family and so is closely related to cabbage, broccoli, and brussels sprouts.
Harvest Bok choy at any time, but if you want to get the most bulk out of them, grow until the growing conditions will make them begin to seed. This is the bolting that I talked about before. If they begin to bolt, they will begin to get more bitter. Harvest before they start to bolt if you can help it.
Remember, if you don’t succeed, try try again!