Every two weeks, Patti Devlin takes her four young children to the Berkeley Bowl, a market filled with fresh and often unusual foods of the world. The family makes all kinds of culinary discoveries, which Devlin frequently takes home to cook. One trip resulted in this sophisticated combination of sweeet napa cabbage, bitter radicchio, and nutty sesame oil. The stir-fry might not suit all kids' tastes, but the Devlin children like its fresh flavor.
1 head (about 1 1/4 lb.) napa cabbage
1 head (about 10 oz.) radicchio or red cabbage
1 teaspoon salad oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon fennel seed
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tablespoon Asian (toasted) sesame oil
1 tablespoon black sesame seed (optional)
How to Make It
Remove core from napa cabbage; discard core. Cut the cabbage crosswise into thin shreds to make about 2 quarts. Cut the radicchio in half through core; remove and discard core. Cut the radicchio into thin shreds to make about 1 quart.
Place a wok or 5- to 6-quart pan over high heat. When the pan is hot, add salad oil, the garlic and ginger, and the fennel seed; stir 30 seconds. Add the napa cabbage, the radicchio, and the soy sauce; cover pan and cook for 1 minute. Remove pan lid, and stir-fry until vegetables wilt, about 2 minutes longer. Stir in half of the chopped cilantro and all of the sesame oil.
Transfer vegetables to a serving dish; sprinkle with remaining cilantro and sesame seed before serving.