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We recently had a good friend who lives out-of-town over for dinner. The wine and conversation flowed. As it happens, this friend also happens to be a chef who owns his own food truck. So mostly, the conversation revolved around food. It was wonderful! He gave me some great ideas, some of which you’ll see here in the future. The one for today is the grilled baby bok choy. Now, I happen to like bok choy. Think of it as a cross between a spinach and a celery even though it’s technically a cabbage. The stalks are succulent and juicy and the leaves are green and delicate. I use it in all sorts of things. Stir-fry, coleslaw and soups mostly. I have to say that it had never dawned on me to grill it, but it sounded wonderful!

ImageWhen I started thinking of grilling the baby bok choy I wondered what else I’d make with it. I decided on shrimp because I haven’t done a seafood post in a while and because I really like shrimp. The marinade for the shrimp is easy and you probably have most of it already in your pantry or refrigerator. The shrimp should be marinated for an hour or less. If you leave it too long, you’ll end up with shrimp ceviche due to the citrus juices. No one wants that!

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Grilled Asian Shrimp with Baby Bok Choy

  • 1 – 1 1/2 lbs medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 Tble sesame oil
  • 2 Tble lime juice
  • 1/3 cup orange juice
  • 1 Tble ginger, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 Tble cilantro, minced
  • 1 Tble plum sauce (see notes)
  • 1 tsp sriracha
  • 4 or 5 baby bok choy head, split in half lengthwise, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • salt + pepper

Combine soy sauce, sesame oil, lime juice, orange juice, ginger, garlic, cilantro, plum sauce and sriracha in a medium bowl. Reserve half of marinade to a separate container and refrigerate. Add peeled shrimp to remaining marinade. Marinate for up to one hour but not longer in the refrigerator. Place shrimp on metal or bamboo skewers that have been soaked in water for an hour. Put shrimp in the center of a hot grill. Grill shrimp 2 minutes on each side or until just done. Remove from grill to a warm platter. Set shrimp aside.

Brush bok choy halves with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place cut-side down on grill. Cook over medium heat about 3-4 minutes, being careful not to burn the ends. Flip boy choy over. Brush with remaining marinade. Cook another 2-3 minutes until bok choy are soft and slightly charred. Remove from grill. Sprinkle with more sesame oil and soy sauce if desired.

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Notes:

  • If you don’t have the plum sauce, don’t fret. You can substitute 1 Tble brown sugar and 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes.
  • Pay attention while you’re cooking the bok choy. I didn’t and I burned the ends right off. Don’t do what I did!
  • Can’t get shrimp where you live? Don’t like shrimp? No worries! You can use chicken instead. Cut up 2 large or 3 medium chicken breasts into cubes. Place in marinade for 2-3 hours or overnight. Proceed as usual.
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