Goodbye Kitchen, Hello Grill

May 13, 2008

I mentioned yesterday that the haze of exams (what day is it, again?) has me taking a little leave of absence from the kitchen (and the grocery shopping, and the phone call returning and, oh, the finger nails: those could use some help). But that doesn’t mean we’re not eating. Or even that we’re not eating well. For instance, we had a lovely dinner at one of our favorite neighborhood restaurants over the weekend (asparagus and halibut and morels? I thought I’d died and gone to spring (and examless) heaven). And then we were treated to a delicious Mother’s Day cookout at Kevin’s parents’ house on Sunday night.

And the cooking action right here at home hasn’t ceased altogether, either. It’s just that the hub of the culinary activity has shifted out of the kitchen and up onto our deck and right onto our grill which is typically manned by, um, the man of the house. Lately, if I’m studying around the dinner hour, it’s a safe bet that Kevin is sipping an ice cold 312, surveying the Chicago skyline and grilling up some delicious food.

(Click “more” for the rest of the story, more photos & the recipe.)

This grilled baby boy choy is a case in point. And, wow, do I have to give the guy credit. It was delicious. And quick and easy too. The diminutive heads quickly bask in a slick of spicy-sweet-tangy marinade, which clings to the leaves and snakes its way into every little crevice of the bisected bok choys. Then they hit a piping hot grill for just long enough to impart a smoke and a char—you know, so you don’t forget where the came from. We had this the other night with a piece of barely grilled tuna (also courtesy of grill-master Kevin) and it was quite possibly the most stunningly high-flavor-to-time-spent-ratio-ed meal ever. Ever. Now, if the temperatures would only just stay above teeth-chattering levels, we could make this little arrangement permanent.

Grilled Baby Bok Choy
Adapted from Gourmet via Food Network

4 heads baby bok choy, halved lengthwise and cleaned
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tablespoon chili paste
Salt and pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 scallions, chopped
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, plus more for garnish
lime wedges, for garnish

In a large bowl, combine vinegar and chili paste and season with salt and pepper. Whisk in oil. Stir in scallions and sesame seeds. Add the bok choy and toss to coat. Chill for 15-20 minutes.

Prepare the grill. Lay the bok choy halves on hot grill, cut sides down. Grill 2 to 5 minutes until crisp tender. Serve with additional sesame seeds and lime wedges.


6 Responses to “Goodbye Kitchen, Hello Grill”

  1. Erika Says:

    Looks great and simple is always good!

  2. katy Says:

    i made roasted pak choi a few months ago and was surprised at how delicious it was! a little (well, a lot of) heat and these just become spectacular. yum!

  3. Jerry Says:

    Love baby bok choy and now I have a new recipe! Yeah!

  4. Hillary Says:

    Yum! I LOVE grilling season. Food is so much better in the summer 🙂

    Oh yea, we’re also having a contest on our blog where you could win a package from Lou Malnati’s. Check it out!

  5. Bonnie Says:

    Hi !
    I’ve recently discovered your blog and I LOVE IT ! I made this last night and well … it was delicious. I just have one question. The leaves burned on the grill before the other end seemed ‘crisp tender’. Did you find that with yours ? I ended up putting them in the oven for a few minutes since I had cooked something else in there and it was already hot … Any thoughts on what I might have done wrong ?
    Also … was thinking next time I might add a drop or two of sesame oil to the marinade … yum !

  6. Melissa Says:

    Thanks so much for the recipe. We’re grilling hoisin-glazed pork ribs and I wanted a bok choy recipe to go with them. This sounds great! I’m going to try wrapping the leaves in foil for the first half of the cooking time to see if they don’t burn. Hope this helps others. I’m also going to try the sesame oil…can’t wait! Thanks again!

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