Tender Chinese Broccoli (Gai Lan)

"My favorite veggie is "gai lan," also known as "Chinese broccoli" or "Chinese kale." It is easily found in Asian groceries these days, and I love the stuff! It doesn't taste like North American broccoli, no sir... I haven't been able to pin down exactly what other veggie it tastes like, but I do believe it resembles tender, tasty artichoke heart. Give it a try! The recipe below is how I make it, although you can also steam it."
photo by a food.com user photo by a food.com user
Ready In:




  • Trim the gai lan- don't cut off the long, thick stem because, unlike North American broccoli, the stem of gai lan will cook well to become nice and tender; the flowers are also edible so don't remove them.
  • Place gai lan in a Dutch oven and fill with plenty of water.
  • Add the chopped garlic.
  • Bring water to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the thickest part of the stem is tender.
  • Combine the soy, brown sugar, fish sauce, and sesame oil.
  • Drain the gai lan and place on serving plate, then drizzle the soy mixture over.
  • Serve and enjoy!
  • Gai lan is also good with oyster sauce.

Questions & Replies

Got a question? Share it with the community!


  1. Very nice combination of flavours in the sauce - I like it a lot. I found the cooking time a bit long, and I think next time I will try steaming the gai lan, and maybe add the raw garlic directly to the sauce (in which case I'll use less.) Tasty and not hard to prepare, thanks for sharing the recipe!


<p>It's simply this: I love to cook! :) <br /><br />I've been hanging out on the internet since the early days and have collected loads of recipes. I've tried to keep the best of them (and often the more unusual) and look forward to sharing them with you, here. <br /><br />I am proud to say that I have several family members who are also on RecipeZaar! <br /><br />My husband, here as <a href=http://www.recipezaar.com/member/39857>Steingrim</a>, is an excellent cook. He rarely uses recipes, though, so often after he's made dinner I sit down at the computer and talk him through how he made the dishes so that I can get it down on paper. Some of these recipes are in his account, some of them in mine - he rarely uses his account, though, so we'll probably usually post them to mine in the future. <br /><br />My sister <a href=http://www.recipezaar.com/member/65957>Cathy is here as cxstitcher</a> and <a href=http://www.recipezaar.com/member/62727>my mom is Juliesmom</a> - say hi to them, eh? <br /><br />Our <a href=http://www.recipezaar.com/member/379862>friend Darrell is here as Uncle Dobo</a>, too! I've been typing in his recipes for him and entering them on R'Zaar. We're hoping that his sisters will soon show up with their own accounts, as well. :) <br /><br />I collect cookbooks (to slow myself down I've limited myself to purchasing them at thrift stores, although I occasionally buy an especially good one at full price), and - yes, I admit it - I love FoodTV. My favorite chefs on the Food Network are Alton Brown, Rachel Ray, Mario Batali, and Giada De Laurentiis. I'm not fond over fakey, over-enthusiastic performance chefs... Emeril drives me up the wall. I appreciate honesty. Of non-celebrity chefs, I've gotta say that that the greatest influences on my cooking have been my mother, Julia Child, and my cooking instructor Chef Gabriel Claycamp at Seattle's Culinary Communion. <br /><br />In the last couple of years I've been typing up all the recipes my grandparents and my mother collected over the years, and am posting them here. Some of them are quite nostalgic and are higher in fat and processed ingredients than recipes I normally collect, but it's really neat to see the different kinds of foods they were interested in... to see them either typewritten oh-so-carefully by my grandfather, in my grandmother's spidery handwriting, or - in some cases - written by my mother years ago in fountain pen ink. It's like time travel. <br /><br />Cooking peeve: food/cooking snobbery. <br /><br />Regarding my black and white icon (which may or may not be the one I'm currently using): it the sea-dragon tattoo that is on the inside of my right ankle. It's also my personal logo.</p>
View Full Profile

Find More Recipes