Thursday, May 12, 2011

Ginger, Garlic, Gai-lan (Chinese Brocolli)

This easy recipe was written by  Chef Andrew Cohen. It can be found in the website Edible Paradise.  I want to give thanks to my cousin's wife again for finding the recipe and sharing this link!

This dish has a sweet-tangy sauce which is a nice complement to bittersweet taste of Chinese broccoli
(gai lan). You can substitute regular broccoli if gai lan is not available.  Although the recipe doesn't call for it, my cousin's wife added chinese sausage and ham for meat.  You can add any meat if you like: chicken, beef, or pork cut in small pieces.

1 bunch Chinese broccoli (gai lan), washed and leaves separated from stems
1 to 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and de-germed, minced
1 inch of ginger root, peeled and grated finely, saving juice in small bowl
2 green onions, cleaned and root removed, sliced finely on the diagonal
1/3 cup of good quality (low sodium) chicken or vegetable stock
1 tablespoon of soy sauce, darker Chinese style preferred
1 tablespoon of brandy
1 teaspoon sugar
1 to 2 teaspoons sesame oil (Kadoya Black Sesame oil preferred for deeper, more subtle flavor)
2 to 3 tablespoons of grapeseed, peanut, or canola oil
1 tablespoon cornstarch and 1 tablespoon warm water (optional)

If stems of Chinese broccoli (gai lan) are thick skinned, peel. Cut into two-inch lengths. Shred the larger leaves. Combine the stock, soy sauce, brandy and sugar together, and set aside. Heat a wok or ten-inch chef’s pan over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of oil, and when hot, add the gai lan stems. Cook, stirring to prevent burning, until the stems are coloring up and getting tender, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the leaves and toss, cook about 30 seconds to wilt.

Remove the vegetable from the wok, and add 1 tablespoon oil. When hot, add garlic, and then squeeze the grated ginger pulp over the pan to drip the ginger juice in the oil. Add the green onions and toss for 30 seconds. Add the stock, then the gai lan. Toss to coat and heat through. If not using cornstarch to thicken the sauce, cook the dish over high heat to reduce the sauce until slightly thickened.
To make a thicker sauce, this is where the cornstarch comes into play. Mix the cornstarch and the warm water together to form a slurry. When well mixed, pour into the wok and stir, and bring to a boil. This will thicken the sauce. At this point you finish the dish. Remove the pan from the heat, and drizzle with the sesame oil. Toss to coat well, and serve.


  1. I'm glad you like the recipe. I really like the fact that you played with the recipe and made it your own. The chicken looks good, but I have to go find some of the sausages to try now.

    I have more family friendly recipes here;
    and if you read the newsletters there are further suggestions.

    I like your site, and wish you well on your mission. Enjoy this time. They grow up so fast.

    TTFN. Andrew Cohen, Chef

  2. Thank you Chef Andrew Cohen! We have other recipes from you that we love and will be posting in the future. Thank you for sharing the link as well!