Chinese greens
August 26, 2006 6:19 PM   Subscribe

What vegetable is this?

I had a vegetable dish that looked just like this in a Chinese restaurant recently. Anyone know the name, either in Chinese, or in English, or both?
posted by louigi to Food & Drink (30 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I don't know about seeing it a chinese restaurant but the vegetable kind of looks like sauteed brocolli rabe.
posted by bim at 6:22 PM on August 26, 2006

looks like pea shoots, called "dao miu" or something like that in cantonese.
posted by sergeant sandwich at 6:22 PM on August 26, 2006

I have had that at a Vietnamese restaurant that i frequent in New York called Nha Trang (Baxter street near Canal--incredible food!). It is called "hollow vegetable" at this restaurant and that's how i order it. I'm not sure if it has another name in English and i am not sure what the Vietnamese word is for it.
posted by Lucas822 at 6:24 PM on August 26, 2006

I gotta admit.. just from that picture it looks like regular old green beans but I'm figuring that's not the answer you're looking for? :)
posted by wackybrit at 6:26 PM on August 26, 2006

Definitely broccoli rabe. Collard greens, kale, and other dark green leafy vegetables don't have that type of stem.

I didn't know that it was used in Chinese cooking, but Wikipedia says it's so.
posted by chickletworks at 6:27 PM on August 26, 2006

It looks like ong choy, or Ipomoea aquatica- apparently the "hollow vegetable" that Lucas822 mentioned. I've had friends cook it, but not yet seen it in a restaurant.
posted by oneirodynia at 6:33 PM on August 26, 2006

I'm with the people who say broccoli rabe. Here's a Flickr photo that looks almost the same.
posted by MsMolly at 6:34 PM on August 26, 2006

Probably rabe's Asian cousin kai-lan 芥兰 (Pinyin: gaìlán), or Chinese kale.
posted by rob511 at 6:36 PM on August 26, 2006

Chinese Spinach is my guess, too. I've had it in assorted Chinatown restaurants here and there and it's quite a bit different from broccoli rabe in person.
posted by briank at 6:37 PM on August 26, 2006

Looks like green beans to me.
posted by fire&wings at 6:44 PM on August 26, 2006

According to wikipedia, 空心菜 is Chinese for "hollow vegetable"-so Chinese spinach is probably the same thing as ong choy (which one of my friends called "water spinach").
posted by oneirodynia at 6:47 PM on August 26, 2006

Does look like (young) gai lan to me.
posted by solid-one-love at 6:51 PM on August 26, 2006

posted by randomination at 7:09 PM on August 26, 2006

the dark spots at the centers of the cross sections of the stalks favor the ong choy interpretation over gai lan, but it's pretty hard to tell from the low resolution.

since you ate it, you should be able to resolve whether or not it was ong choy pretty easily, were the stalks hollow?
posted by juv3nal at 7:15 PM on August 26, 2006

There are lots of vegetables used in Chinese cooking with that general shape. Choy sum (yau choy) is another candidate. It's sometimes called Chinese broccoli (as are many similar vegetables), often served with dim sum, and sometimes mistaken for bok choy. Is it the same thing as ong choy? I frankly don't know.

But yeah, there are lots of vegetables that look kind of like that.
posted by mr_roboto at 7:27 PM on August 26, 2006

Definitely looks like the "hollow vegetable" (ong choy) to me. It's hollow and crunchy, right? I think it's sometimes cooked with a stinky tofu, and has like a yellowy liquid/broth when cooked.
posted by hooray at 7:29 PM on August 26, 2006

It wasn't hollow. So far I'm favouring the idea of it actually being pea shoots, and the photo I linked not being perfectly accurate. Thanks for all the input so far!
posted by louigi at 7:44 PM on August 26, 2006

picture of dao miu here (near the bottom) - you see it variously spelled as dau miu, daw miu, tao miu, dow miu. pretty sure that's not rapini or gai lan or choi sum, but it's hard to tell from the picture. but dao miu's my favorite chinese green and the first time i had it i had to know what it was called too! (:
posted by sergeant sandwich at 8:06 PM on August 26, 2006

I think it's Chinese broccoli. In my local Asian market they call it gai lan.
posted by cabingirl at 8:08 PM on August 26, 2006

Looks like kangkung - or what oneirodynia said. mmm, kangkung.
posted by divabat at 8:24 PM on August 26, 2006

It's morning glory. In Thailand it's called "puk boong".
posted by Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese at 8:43 PM on August 26, 2006

I, too, think it looks like what Seattle dim sum places call "Chinese broccoli," which I always assumed was broccoli rabe.
posted by librarina at 8:53 PM on August 26, 2006

Kraftmatic Adjustable Cheese, I agree with you. I've eaten enough of it to recognize.
posted by whatzit at 9:33 PM on August 26, 2006

Pak Boong. Morning glory, chinese spinach, or swamp cabbage are other names.
posted by madman at 10:54 PM on August 26, 2006

gai lan
posted by arcticseal at 6:08 AM on August 27, 2006

I'm pretty sure I've seen a seaweed that looked like that served in a restaurant, but for the life of me I couldn't tell you what it was called.
posted by lekvar at 10:30 AM on August 27, 2006

I ate some of that for lunch today, and I'm in China right now! I've usually seen it called water morning glory in English. Also known as rau muong in Vietnamese or ong choy or kang kung in other Chinesish languages. Coincidentally, I just asked what it was called in Mandarin, but I don't remember what I was told. It was three syllables and started with 'Kang'.
posted by Etaoin Shrdlu at 10:56 AM on August 27, 2006

Is this what you had? It's Chinese Broccoli/Chinese Kale/Kai-Lan/Gai-Lan/Jielan, which is not the same as broccoli raab...

recipe for Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce

posted by sLevi at 12:24 PM on August 27, 2006

Yay, we're all right, and this is an awesome resource here, the asia food glossary. Take note of the bottom section on "words for this in other languages." Let this go down as the one thing that I want to remember haivng accomplished today.
posted by whatzit at 11:33 AM on August 31, 2006

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