Looking for something quick and nutritious to throw together for dinner at the end of a long day? My Bok Choy, Cabbage and Garlic Stir-Fry is a delicious, easy to make dish that’s ready in under 15 minutes. This dish would pair nicely with a side salad or pre-cooked quinoa that can easily be made ahead of time. I am all about planning ahead as much as possible in the kitchen to save time on food prep during the work week. One of my shortcuts is to prepare a large batch of quinoa as it lasts in the refrigerator for up to a week, or will keep well in the freezer for longer. Quinoa is always a perfect addition to my salads as quinoa is an excellent source of plant-based protein. I also like to pre-shred cabbage (either by hand or in the food processor) and it keeps well in the refrigerator in a resalable bag for 4 to 5 days.
Today, I have used regular green cabbage which is widely available this time of year. Cabbage is sometimes overlooked, and I have to admit I have only recently started using cabbage in my cooking, but when prepared properly, I have found that it is wonderful in stir-fries or even shredded in salads. Cabbage, which is related to broccoli and kale, is loaded with healthy nutrients. Like its relatives, cabbage also contains powerful, sulphurous substances that protect the liver, boost its detox capacity, aid in the processing of hormones and can even protect against certain cancers. Even the Egyptians knew how beneficial cabbage is for the liver, in fact it is said that they ate loads of cabbage in advance of their drinking binges. Sulphur, which is sometimes referred to as the “beauty mineral”, is important for healthy hair, skin and nails. Cabbage is also loaded with fiber, vitamin C, folic acid, calcium, potassium.*
My family really enjoys bok choy which is a type of Chinese cabbage - I even grew some in my garden last season and it faired quite well. If you have not had the opportunity to try it out I highly suggest it as it is simple to prepare and delicious. In addition to being easy to cook with, bok choy is also nutritionally rich - it contains high amounts of vitamin A, C and K. A serving of shredded bok choy (1 cup) contains a 10 calories, according to Produce for Better Health Foundation data and is very low in natural sodium, containing only 45 milligrams, or 2% of your daily value.**
Garlic is a wonderful, healing food. It has been documented that garlic has been valued in Asia for thousands of years as a potent medicine with the ability to act as an aphrodisiac, a purifier, healer and strength-builder. Garlic protects against cancer and contains powerful naturally occurring antibiotics which helps clear bacterial, fungal, worm and amoebic infections in the digestive track. These antibiotic properties combined with its immune-boosting role and decongestant effect enables garlic to fight viral and other infections like coughs and colds. Garlic is also highly regarded as being heart friendly as it prevents the hardening of arteries, reduces LDL “bad” cholesterol and blood fats while increasing HDL “good” cholesterol, deters the clumping of blood cells, lowers blood pressure and helps to prevent harmful oxidative damage to cholesterol. The benefits in garlic come from naturally occurring sulphur compounds, like allicin that are also powerful detoxifiers to the liver and lymph system and are anti-inflammatories.*
This recipe also calls for coconut oil, which in its most natural and unrefined form, is healing, boosts immunity and is one of the few oils that is safe to cook with at high temperatures. While coconut is one of the only plant-based sources of saturated fat, it does have some great benefits that are not to be ignored, including its ability to help boost energy levels, reduce LDL cholesterol, mega antibacterial qualities and reduction of inflammation (which causes disease in the body). Be sure to select organic unrefined, virgin coconut oil.
The coconut sauce I am referring to in the ingredients listed below is a savoury vegan, gluten-free sauce that is made from coconut sap. It is often called coconut sauce or coconut aminos and is an alternative to soy sauce that I highly recommend. Coconut sap is very low glycemic (GI of only 35), is an abundant source of minerals, vitamin C, amino acids, broad-spectrum B vitamins and has a nearly neutral pH level. It has a similar flavour to soy sauce and can be subbed in place of soy-sauce in marinades, stir-fry, dressings and can be served with sushi.***
2 tsp organic unrefined, virgin coconut oil
4 - 5 medium size bok choy
2 cups cabbage, julienned
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp coconut sauce - soy sauce alternative (or more to taste)
Himalayan salt & freshly ground pepper, to taste
Red pepper flakes, to taste
(Use organic ingredients)
1. Heat large frying pan over medium heat. Add coconut oil and allow to melt.
2. Once oil is heated add bok choy, cabbage, garlic and coconut sauce, sautéing the vegetables until cooked through. This should take about 6 - 8 minutes.
Note: Be careful not to overcook your vegetables, preferably they should have some crunch and not be soggy.
3. Season with Himalayan salt, freshly ground pepper and red pepper flakes to taste before removing from heat.
Makes about 4 servings
Much love, #LoveWildLiveFree
*Savona, Natalie. Wonderfoods: The Best Nutrition and Recipes for Optimum Health. London: Quadrille Limited, 2006. Print.
** Sefcik, Lisa. "Nutritional Value of Bok Choy." LIVESTRONG.COM. LIVESTRONG.COM, 10 Feb. 2014. Web. 04 Feb. 2015.
***”Coconut Aminos." Coconut Aminos. Coconut Secret, n.d. Web. 11 Jan. 2015. <https://www.coconutsecret.com/aminos2.html>.