All recipes are for 2 servings unless noted. Oil is canola oil and salt is kosher salt.


Chingensai no gomaae / baby bok choi in sesame dressing

A rich small side dish. A small amount of spicy tobanjan is added below for a flavor twist.

2 chingensai baby bok choi

For gomaae sesame dressing
2 tsp sake
1 tsp mirin
1/2 tsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame paste
1/4 tsp tobanjan


Divide chingensai into three sections: stems, lower leaves (firm section) and top leaves (soft section).
Cut into the same size lengthwise.

*Home-grown chingensai is used here. Store-bought chingensai usually does not have long stems.


Bring water to boil and add a pinch of salt.
Put chingensai, the firmest part (stems) first.

When color changes (brightens), wait for a while, then put white section of leaves.

 When the white part becomes somewhat transparent, add the green section of leaves.

When green leaf color changes (brightens), immediately drain, spread on flat strainer, and cool.


In a microwaveable bowl, put sake and mirin, and microwave until slightly thick, for 30-60 seconds.

Add sesame paste and mix.

Add soy sauce and mix.

Taste, add soy sauce if necessary.

Add tobajan, and mix.


When cool enough, gently squeeze extra water (do not smash thicker parts).

Put into sesame dressing and mix.

This final process should be done within 10 minutes of serving.

  • Thickness of sesame dressing is adjusted by the amount of sake or sesame paste.
  • If sake & mirin mixture become too thick like syrup after microwaving, add a little bit of sake to thin.
  • When the amount of vegetables is small, there would be some dressing left. Do not serve extra dressing. Too much dressing would ruin the balance.

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