Originating from China everyone says although for years I thought San Choy Bau (or is it Sang Choi Bow? Or even San Choy Bow?) came from Korea as it was two of my Korean students who first made me a vegan version of this dish which is commonly made with pork. Where it originates from is not known, on the internet anyway. However what is known is that ‘Sang Choi’ means lettuce and ‘Bau’ means to wrap.
Last week I went into our local book shop to buy a novel for my holiday and of course I walked out with a cook book. It happens every time. I love looking through cookbooks even though I rarely follow a recipe I still find them incredibly useful for inspiration. For example I have been making Kidgeree (an Indian rice and lentil) the same way for years then last week after I purchased Saffron Soul by Mira Manek, I was inspired to make a kidgeree entirely different to my original recipe. Guess what? I love this new recipe more than the one I have been making for years. I didn’t really follow the recipe and I decided to make the coriander chutney in the book but I used macadamia nuts instead of peanuts, didn’t have anything near the quantity of coriander that the recipe suggested and I used dates instead of honey and added lime because in my not so humble opinion a chutney is not chutney without lime. The result looked anything but a chutney but was sensational mixed through the kidgeree.
What oils do you use? It is a big question, for me the number one importance is that the oil is organic and secondly that it is cold pressed. Ever since I left home at the age of eighteen I have used good quality cold pressed olive oil. It was the only oil I used for decades. In recent years though becoming aware of heating points of oils things have changed. Basically, I still predominantly use olive oil but this is added usually at the end of cooking or if I can't resist I will add it to a pan on a low heat.