What is this?

IMG_6625 IMG_6626Walking home yesterday I saw these on display in one of the many Asian grocery stores along Grand street.   The older Chinese women spoke not a lick of English so asking her: what these are called?  Wasn’t a terribly successful strategy.  

Sometimes I really wish I spoke Mandarin and Cantonese so I could better negotiate the Asian food markets of New York’s Chinatown.  

I was hoping one of the other vendors would be selling these strange and exotic vegetables and I could ask them, alas she was the one person who had them.

Mr Google has let me down.  In the past 45 minutes I’ve looked at dozens of exotic and Asian vegetable sites and had no luck.  I did however find some very interesting sites like this one.

Anyone out there know what they are?


About urbanfoodguy

I'm a self taught cook with a dedication to buying and eating food that is as humanely and sustainably raised as possible. Which is why in addition to recipes you will see a lot of environmental/political reporting here. I started cooking when I was about 6, it's something I always loved to do. Watching Graham Kerr - aka "The Galloping Gourmet" - was what got me started and I have never really looked back. Over the years I've been a private chef, a caterer, and a food stylist for magazines such as Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, Real Simple, Oprah, Martha Stewart's Everyday Food and many more. I've also worked in the prep kitchen for the Food Network on the Bobby Flay and Paula Deen shows. Now I work at home in my kitchen sharing with you here recipes that I create or that other people have created that inspire me and I think you will like. I love my neighborhood (the Lower East Side of Manhattan) and I love to travel. Because NYC is such a big place I tend to focus mostly on my 'hood and the ones that are close by: The East Village, Bowery, Chinatown and Williamsburg. My love of travel has no limits really, I'm always ready to get on a plane. I was lucky enough to have a business for many years that allowed me to spend a lot of time in South East Asia. These days I've been spending time in Mexico, Germany, Canada and the West Coast of the U.S., but check back you never know where I might end up. I do consulting, cooking classes, and freelance lifestyle writing so if you are interested please send me a note: urbanfoodguy@gmail.com
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3 Responses to What is this?

  1. Hi Mark,
    Looks like AA Choy, which is also known by several other names: Taiwan lettuce, AA Chop Xin, or stem lettuce. I’ve seen it spelled as Aa Choy, A.A. Choy or just AA Choy. I found this information on http://www.seriouseats.com/2014/05/asian-green-guide.html. Hope this helps!

    • urbanfoodguy says:

      And the winner is: Dennis! Thanks so much for finding this, I looked and looked and couldn’t find anything. How exciting, now I need to find a recipe to use it in! Thanks so much! xo Mark

  2. Pingback: A A Choy, no it’s not the Name of an Artist, it’s the Name of a Chinese Vegetable. | Urbanfoodguy

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