Peace Out, Summer Choi

19 Jun

Summer choi.  A simple Google search returned hits of a person with the name Summer Choi. Guess she is an artist.  Certainly didn’t help me in my quest for dinner.  When I tried refining my search to “summer choi recipes” I ended up with a lot of suggestions for bok choy.  I love bok choy but again, not much help when in my fridge, wrapped in wet paper towels, were two large bunches of summer choi from two subsequent CSA hauls.  Hrm.  I went back to the fridge to investigate the greens.  It looked like frisée.  Upon tasting it, it tasted like frisée.  Okay then.  Summer choi = frisée.  Now we were getting somewhere.  The only problem is that I don’t really like frisée.  I always pick it off my salads, relegating it to the same place that radish generally resides:  the wild world of decorative vegetables.  I did some quick math and decided there weren’t enough salads in my future to decorate them reasonably with enough frisée to use both the bunches.  Plus, wasteful.  Back to the drawing board.  Some more research revealed that most people pair frisée with bacon and a soft boiled egg.  That would be great but I don’t eat meat of the land-living variety and we had already finished our half dozen eggs from last week’s share.  And then, bingo!  A recipe for suatéed lemon maple frisée from epicurious, reproduced here with added exclamations.

Suatéed Lemon Maple Frisée

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 cup coarse fresh bread crumbs – we used Panco!
  • 3/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 3/4 teaspoon anchovy paste
  • 1 (1-pound) head frisée, torn
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon pure maple syrup

Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil over medium-heat until shimmers.  Add breadcrumbs and cook until golden brown, should take about 4 minutes.  Transfer into a bowl and add the lemon zest (really makes the dish!) and a pinch of salt.

Wipe the crumbs out of the pan, add the remaining olive oil and the anchovy paste (warning:  it’s a little stinky!) and heat for about 15 seconds.  With the heat on medium-high, add half the frisée and suaté until slightly wilted.  This should take about a minute, give or take.  Then add the remaining frisée and cook until wilted, another 2 minutes.  Take it off the heat and stir in the lemon juice, maple syrup and salt and pepper to taste.  Put on a plate and sprinkle (very liberally, I’d say) with the Panco. There will be likely be some Panco left over after the dish has been topped.  Try to keep yourself from eating it with a spoon.  Or don’t.  Personally, I have found that my self-control when it comes to lemon-zested Panco is seriously lacking.  You learn something new every day.

Seriously, this dish was a life saver.  Unfortunately we were too late for the first batch of “summer choi” which we were at first a little relieved about but after tasting this, and realizing how quick and easy it was, we were sort of sad it had to be banned to the garbage.  This wasn’t the prettiest dish we ever made (hence the lack of accompanying picture plus we ate it too fast), but it certainly went down easy.  Frisée, gone!


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