Chinese broccoli, also known as Gai Lan, is one of the popular specialty greens found at the farmers’ market. It is believed that early Portuguese explorers brought cabbage to Asia and through generations of careful breeding, the Chinese developed this vegetable.
It has wide flat leaves, similar to collards, with a thick crisp-tender stalk. It has a flavor similar to broccoli but stronger and slightly bitter. Fresh Chinese broccoli is nearly impossible to find anywhere besides the farmers' market, in its just-picked state.
It is low in calories, high in dietary fiber, vitamin A, vitamin C, folate, manganese, and very high in potassium.
When buying Chinese broccoli, make sure the leaves are bright green and not discolored or wilted.
Put Chinese broccoli in a sealed container or bag and store in the fridge for up to five days. Before using, make sure to wash under cold water for at least 30 seconds.