Garlic Chive Flower Salad (凉拌韭菜花）
July 3, 2021  Print
I said in my Stem Lettuce Salad post that I would introduce more Asian summer salads to help with the heat, so here is another simple yet delicious one, the Garlic Chive Flower Salad.
The salad is actually made with the garlic chive flower stalks, which are young flower shoots from garlic chives before the flower buds open and mature. Unlike the garlic chives’ flat leaves, the flower stalks have a much stiffer and harder appearance. When cooked, they are sweet, succulent, with a pleasant garlicky taste.
I use garlic chive flower stalks for a variety dishes. Most of them require stir frying. They go well with many types of proteins, like eggs, meat, and seafood. But since it’s summer time, salad makes a lot more sense in this Texas heat. It’s so easy and simple yet it is quite tasty and refreshing. You can eat it by itself or pair it with rice and congee.
Gluten Free, VEGAN, Low Carb
Preparation Time: 15 minutes
Total Time: 20 minutes
Servings: 2 people
- 1/3 lb garlic chive flower stalks1
- 1 teaspoon light soy sauce2
- 1/2 teaspoon mirin2
- ~1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- Heat a pot of water in a large sauce pan or stock pan under medium-high heat. While waiting for the water to boil, thoroughly wash the garlic chive flower stalks. Make sure to keep them in the same orientation. Prepare the sauce by combining the 1 teaspoon of light soy sauce with 1/2 teaspoon of mirin.
- When the water boils, add the garlic chive flower stalks to the boiling water while maintaining the same orientation. Add few drops of vegetable oil to the water. Let the garlic chive flower stalks blanch in hot water for 2 minutes.
- Prepare a large bowl of icy water. When 2 minutes are up, immediately shock the garlic chive flower stalks by submerging them in the icy water. Try to maintain the orientation of the stalks.
- When the garlic chive flower stalks are cold to the touch, take them out to a clean cutting board. Trim off the small flower buds.3 Then make 2 to 3 cuts so the stalks are in long, even matchsticks. Arrange them on a plate. Drizzle the sauce prepared from step 1 on top.
- Heat a skillet under medium high heat. When the skillet is warm, add the 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. After the oil becomes hot but not smoking, carefully pour it over the sauce. Enjoy!
- You can find garlic chive flower stalks sold in bundles in most Asian grocery stores. Like I mentioned earlier, they are the young flower shoots from garlic chives before the flower buds open and mature.
- If you don’t have mirin (a sweet Japanese rice wine) , you can replace soy sauce and mirin altogether with 2 teaspoons of Lee Kum Kee Seasoned Soy Sauce for Seafood.
- You don’t have to cut them off; the buds are edible and have strong garlic flavor. I only cut them off for a uniform look.