Qing Chao Bai Cai

Stir-Fried Pak Choi

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


    as Part of a Chinese Meal, or 2 as a Single Dish.

Appears in

Simple, dependable, tasty, and refreshing - this is the Chinese attitude to fresh seasoned vegetables, stir-fried immediately before they are served. All Cantonese cooks understand that by skillfully using the minimum amount of oil in their heated woks, a few select seasonings, and just a splash of water at exactly the right moment they can bring out all the natural flavour of the vegetable. One of the best illustrations of this technique is fresh bai cai (pak choi). Found throughout China, it has a truly wonderful flavour reminiscent of spinach or Swiss chard.


  • 450 g/1 lb pak choi
  • 1 tablespoon peanut oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon water


Prepare the pak choi by removing the stalks with leaves from the stem. If the stalks are wide, split them in half. Cut the stalks with leaves into 7.5-cm/3-in pieces. Peel the stem and cut it thinly at a slight angle. Wash the pak choi in several changes of cold water. Drain well and set aside. Heat a wok until it is hot. Add the oil and garlic and stir-fry for 30 seconds. Add the salt and pak choi and stir-fry for 1 minute over high heat. If the mixture seems dry, add 1 tablespoon of water. Continue stir-frying for 4 minutes. Serve at once.