Homesteading In The Pacific Northwest

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Growing Asian Vegetables...and a cooking video

I've had a lot of response to my post about growing and cooking with Asian greens and vegetables and thought I might start a series of posts about these nutritious and easy to grow vegetables ... and the food that I love to cook with them.

I started growing Asian vegetables last year after reading Eliot Coleman's book, The Winter Harvest.  Many Asian vegetable are very cold tolerant and grow well all through the winter months in a cold frame or hoop house.  Mike and I love Asian cuisines and I was spoiled while we were living in Federal Way...we had many Asian markets in town and it was only a short drive to Seattle and the best of all Asian markets ... IMHO ... Uwajimaya (if you are visiting the Seattle area put this place on your list of things to see; and go hungry ...the food court is incredible!!)  Now that we are living in rural Mason County finding fresh Asian vegetables is not as easy.  I'm really glad that I can now grow my own.

I thought I would start my Asian Vegetable series with an introduction to one of my favorites, a variety of Pac Choi (Bok Choy) called Joi Choi.  It's available from Territorial Seed Company (under the heading of Oriental Vegetables).  It's a mild, sweet Pac Choi that grows very quickly;  this one will almost double in size in another three weeks...

I was first introduced to Asian cuisines when I moved to Washington in 1991.  I was working at a reference laboratory in the SODO area of Seattle (SOuth of DOwntown).  On the weekends (read no management staff on site :) the microbiology lab staff would get take out from Uwajimaya.  I had no idea of what to order the first weekend I worked and all my coworkers agreed that for an initial exposure to Japanese take out there could be nothing better than Yakisoba ...and they were right!  It was delicious!!

I had tried making Yakisoba at home many times since then and was never happy with the results.  A few months ago I went on the Internet, looking for a better recipe ... and that's when I met Francis and Chef ...

This is the best Yakisoba recipe ever!!  I usually use chicken instead of pork...and I vary the vegetables depending on what is ready for harvest ( Joi Choi is one of my favorites to add to this one).  Most groceries in our area carry the noodles for Yakisoba, I'm not sure about the rest of the country ...but you can always ask your grocer to get some for you...



  1. Interesting! I may very well try this. Never had yakisoba before. I'm not a huge asian food fan, but I do like chinese.

  2. Yum! I am right with you as a fan of the asian greens particularly in our growing area. Getting a lot of summer heat loving crops like tomatoes and peppers to produce abundantly is a real challenge in our mild and moist climate - but the asian greens, spinach, and cole crops - now that is quite another matter!

  3. Still looking for seeds in my neck of the woods...think I'm going to have to order them from a seed catalog! I put in a small raised bed for I'm ready to go. Thanks for the great posts and the video.

  4. Lynda, I ordered the seeds for the greens online...Territorial and Johnny's have the best selections...