Thursday, May 29, 2008

Mizuna and Tat Soi, Say What?

Why I didn't just look in the bag while I was still at the farm, I don't know. No, instead, I waited until I was driving home, then I decided I had to know, immediately, what we got. I pulled out the paper and started reading. "Mizuna? Tat soi? Oh my, what is THAT?" I became so absorbed in thinking this over, that I drove right past my turn and didn't even notice until I was a good two or three miles down the wrong road. (It's okay--turns out I found a pretty good new route.)

So, what are mizuna and tat soi? According to my handy paper, mizuna is "a versatile Japanese mustard green [with] little yellow blossoms which are edible." Hmm. Tat soi "has crisp spoon-shaped leaves and sweet, crunchy stalks [and] is also known as Chinese flat cabbage."

The mizuna is on top, with the jagged, pointy leaves, and the tat soi is on the bottom.

I've read some more about them both on the internet. I found mizuna described as sweet, earthy, tangy, mild, and peppery. One website, Harvest to Table, said, "You can toss young mizuna leaves—which are mild tasting--in a mixed salad. Larger leaves—which can have a mustardy or bitter-green tang--are best cooked briefly." A cookbook I have from the library, How to Eat Supper, includes "A Taste Guide to Salad Greens," and classifies baby mizuna under "Standouts but Not Overpowering," while it puts mature mizuna in the "Greens with Punch or Bite" category.

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