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Chilled Wilted Tatsoi Salad with Sesame-Ginger Dressing

Chilled Wilted Tatsoi SaladA few weeks ago I went to the Salt Lake Downtown Alliance Farmer’s Market for the first time this year and got some Tatsoi. I had only vaguely heard of Tatsoi, but I thought it would be fun to try. Apparently it’s a type of Asian greens related to bok choy that can be eaten raw or cooked. It’s becoming popular and is now grown around the world. Interestingly, the plant is resistant to cold, and several sources mentioned it can be harvested from underneath snow. Apparently Tatsoi grows in a lovely bunch like this, but what I got was a bag of leaves, and more searching revealed that you can harvest the whole plant or individual leaves. I did find a few other bloggers talking about Tatsoi (mostly people who had received it in their CSA box and were wondering what to do with it!) Some people compare the flavor to mustard greens, but I found it to be milder, more like swiss chard, and very pleasant. Since there are new rules for Weekend Herb Blogging which request focusing on herbs or unusual plant ingredients, I thought Tatsoi would be a fun thing to feature. This week’s host is Simona from Briciole, and here is where to send your entry if you’d like to participate.

This is how my Tatsoi leaves looked when I finally dumped them out of the bag a few days after I bought them. After I washed the leaves, I sliced them into strips.

I used a recipe adapted from Big Oven which called for blanching the Tatsoi for a minute in boiling water, then draining it quickly.

Then the drained Tatsoi should be plunged into ice water to stop the cooking process. (I used the salad spinner for this step.)

You’re going to love this part. I mixed the asian dressing right in the bowl I was going to use for the salad, which eliminated dirtying another dish.

Then the wilted Tatsoi is added to the dressing and chilled for an hour or more before serving. I ate this on a very hot day, and it was a refreshing change from more traditional salad.

Chilled Wilted Tatsoi Salad with Sesame-Ginger Dressing
(Makes about 2 servings, recipe adapted from Big Oven, who got it from the New York Times.)

10-12 ounces Tatsoi leaves
sesame seeds, for garnish (I used a mix of black and white sesame seeds, but you can use whichever type you have)

Dressing Ingredients:
2 T soy sauce (I used Tamari)
1 T rice vinegar (not seasoned)
1 tsp. grated ginger root
1 tsp. sugar or Splenda (use Splenda for the South Beach Diet)
1/2 tsp. Sriracha (or other types of Asian hot chile sauce would work)
fresh ground black pepper to taste


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and fill another bowl with cold water and a handful of ice cubes. Wash Tatsoi leaves (I used a salad spinner) and cut into thick strips. Dump Tatsoi into boiling water, time for exactly one minutes, then drain immediately into colander and dump into bowl with ice water. (I used used the salad spinner again for the ice water.)

While Tatsoi is cooling in ice water, get a plastic bowl with a tight fitting lid that’s large enough to hold all the Tatsoi. Mix dressing ingredients in this bowl, then drain Tatsoi well and add to dressing. Chill in the refrigerator an hour or more, turning bowl over a few times so Tatsoi remains coated with the dressing.

To serve, use tongs or a slotted spoon to remove Tatsoi from bowl and arrange on serving plates. Toast sesame seeds for 1-2 minutes in a dry pan and sprinkle over salad. (If using a mixture, the black seeds burn more quickly than the white ones.) Serve immediately.

I ate half of this and kept the other half in the fridge for a day. It was still okay the second day, but much better freshly made.

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South Beach Suggestions:

Made with Splenda, this is a perfect side dish for any phase of the South Beach Diet, and would be great for any type of low-glycemic eating plan. This would be great to accompany something like Grilled Chicken with Asian Marinade or Stir-Fried Tofu.

More Bloggers Who’ve Discovered Tatsoi:
(Recipes from other blogs may not always be South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)
Char Sui Lo Mein from Tigers and Strawberries
Tatsoi with Mushrooms and Indian Spices from The Crispy Cook
Brown Butter Pasta with Tatsoi from Appetite for China
Unusual Vegetables from Tea And Cookies
Fennel, Lime, and Tatsoi Risotto with Backstrap of Lamb from Abstract Gourmet
Tatsoi Sauteed with Mushrooms and Garlic from Anna’s Cool Finds

Want even more recipes?
I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.

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23 comments on “Chilled Wilted Tatsoi Salad with Sesame-Ginger Dressing”

  1. this is what i need to put me in good shape!! this looks gorgeous!

  2. Now I wonder… are you thinking about growing tatsoi in your beautiful garden next summer? This is one of my favorite Asian greens, and I think it is easy to grow, though I don’t have it in my garden.

  3. Thanks Dhanggit. And Lydia, actually I read that it can be planted spring through fall, and I’m going to try planting it this year if I can find some seeds!

  4. Tatsoi sounds excellent. Always you onto this things Kalyn! I’ll be looking for it now. Hope you can find seeds, that should be really interesting but all your garden space.

  5. Never heard of tatsoi but at Chez Cooksister we are huge fans of pak choi (had some baby pak choi last night, yum!). I do love my greens and these look like no exception 🙂

  6. I haven’t heard of tatsoi either, but I do love greens… will keep an eye out for it at the farmer’s market!

  7. I remember years ago having something simlar at the home of a Chinese friend – I think she called it “Chinese vegetable”, and I’ve been wondering what it was ever since.


  8. Just wanna say you have got a nice blog up here nice work.

  9. Kalyn, this is such a neat recipe. 🙂

    I am trying your grilled chicken breast today for dinner. Hopefully it will work out!

  10. Tanna, I wanted to try this for a couple of years now. Loved it!

    Jeanne, I thought the flavor was very similar to what we call bok choy here, maybe a cross between that and swiss chard.

    Joanna, good luck finding it.

    TBTAM – Chinese vegetable! Love it!

    KP – thanks.

    Anh, I really, really liked it. Do hope you’ll like the grilled chicken.

  11. I haven’t seen this in our Chinese supermarket but I’ll keep my eyes peeled next time I go. Presumably the marinade would work with Choi Sum too?

  12. Mallika, not sure what choi sum is, but I think this would taste good on most any type of greens.

  13. I actually planted a couple of tatsoi seedlings last year and they did well in my garden. I liked their flavor too, when I cooked them. A nice shade of dark green for a healthy salad.

  14. Never heard nor seen Tatsoi before… Will have to keep an eye out for this.

  15. I really love tatsoi, but rarely find it anywhere.
    This looks delicious!

  16. i wish my husband would eat more veggies. this looks delicious though, beautiful plating.

  17. Simona, I think I’m going to order some seeds because I didn’t find it in Salt Lake. I do really want to grow it!

    Jude, I highly recommend it!

    Karen, thanks. Loved it!

    Jaime, thank you! Food styling is definitely not my best skill, but I’m trying to improve!

  18. Kalyn, this looks like just the perfect thing for tatsoi, and thanks so much for remembering my picture. It is one of my favorites!

  19. That looks so tasty and healthy. I haven’t seen tatsoi yet but will keep an eye out for it.

  20. It is a gorgeous plant! Nice to meet your blog!

  21. Otehlia, thanks. Glad you liked the post.

  22. Kalyn, I tried your tatsoi recipe this evening with some tatsoi I got at the farmer's market. This is a lovely recipe. I have shared a link to your site with the farmer's market and all its patrons…and hopefully they will visit here and browse around. Thanks for sharing! The pix are inviting. Bonnie Deahl

  23. Bonnie, thanks for the nice feedback and for sharing the link. So glad you liked the salad.

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