This article needs additional citations for verification . (April 2013) (Learn how and when to remove this template message)
|Cultivar group||Chinensis Group, Pekinensis Group|
|Origin||China, before the 15th century|
|Cultivar group members||Many; see text.|
Chinese cabbage ( Brassica rapa , subspecies pekinensis and chinensis) can refer to two cultivar groups of Chinese leaf vegetables often used in Chinese cuisine: the Pekinensis Group (napa cabbage) and the Chinensis Group (bok choy).
These vegetables are both variant cultivars or subspecies of the turnip and belong to the same genus as such Western staples as cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower. Both have many variations in name, spelling, and scientific classification, especially bok choy cultivars.
The Chinese cabbage was principally grown in the Yangtze River Delta region, but the Ming Dynasty naturalist Li Shizhen popularized it by bringing attention to its medicinal qualities. The variant cultivated in Zhejiang around the 14th century was brought north and the northern harvest of napa cabbage soon exceeded the southern one. These were then exported back south along the Grand Canal to Hangzhou and traded by sea as far south as Guangdong.[ citation needed ]
Napa cabbage became a staple in Northeastern Chinese cuisine for making suan cai , Chinese sauerkraut. In Korea, this developed into kimchi.[ citation needed ] Chinese cabbage is now commonly found in markets throughout the world, catering both to the Chinese diaspora and to northern markets who appreciate its resistance to cold.
In 2017, aboard the International Space Station a crop of Chinese cabbage from a plant growth device included an allotment for crew consumption, while the rest was saved for scientific study.
There are two distinctly different groups of Brassica rapa used as leaf vegetables in China, and a wide range of cultivars within these two groups. The binomial name B. campestris is also used.
This group is the more common of the two, especially outside Asia; names such as napa cabbage, dà báicài (Chinese:大白菜, "large white vegetable"); Baguio petsay or petsay wombok (Tagalog); Chinese white cabbage; "wong a pak" (Hokkien, Fujianese); baechu (Korean : 배추), wongbok and hakusai (Japanese : 白菜 or ハクサイ ) usually refer to members of this group. Pekinensis Group cabbages have broad green leaves with white petioles, tightly wrapped in a cylindrical formation and usually forming a compact head. As the group name indicates, this is particularly popular in northern China around Beijing (Peking).
Chinensis Group cultivars do not form heads; instead, they have smooth, dark green leaf blades forming a cluster reminiscent of mustard or celery. These cultivars are popular in southern China and Southeast Asia. Being winter-hardy, they are increasingly grown in Northern Europe. This group was originally classified as its own species under the name B. chinensis by Linnaeus.[ citation needed ]
Kohlrabi, also called German turnip, is a biennial vegetable, a low, stout cultivar of wild cabbage. It is another cultivar of the same species as cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, Savoy cabbage, and gai lan.
The turnip or white turnip is a root vegetable commonly grown in temperate climates worldwide for its white, fleshy taproot. The word turnip is a compound of turn as in turned/rounded on a lathe and neep, derived from Latin napus, the word for the plant. Small, tender varieties are grown for human consumption, while larger varieties are grown as feed for livestock. In the north of England, Scotland, Ireland, Cornwall and eastern Canada, turnip often refers to rutabaga, a larger, yellow root vegetable in the same genus (Brassica) also known as swede.
Cabbage is a leafy green, red (purple), or white biennial plant grown as an annual vegetable crop for its dense-leaved heads. It is descended from the wild cabbage, and belongs to the "cole crops" or brassicas, meaning it is closely related to broccoli and cauliflower ; Brussels sprouts ; and Savoy cabbage.
Broccoli is an edible green plant in the cabbage family whose large flowering head, stalk and small associated leaves are eaten as a vegetable. The word broccoli comes from the Italian plural of broccolo, which means "the flowering crest of a cabbage", and is the diminutive form of brocco, meaning "small nail" or "sprout".
Brassica is a genus of plants in the mustard family (Brassicaceae). The members of the genus are informally known as cruciferous vegetables, cabbages, or mustard plants. Crops from this genus are sometimes called cole crops—derived from the Latin caulis, denoting the stem or stalk of a plant.
Collard refers to certain loose-leafed cultivars of Brassica oleracea, the same species as many common vegetables, including cabbage and broccoli. Collard is part of the Acephala Group of the species, which includes kale and spring greens. They are in the same cultivar group owing to their genetic similarity. The name "collard" comes from the word "colewort".
Kale, or leaf cabbage, belongs to a group of cabbage cultivars grown for their edible leaves, although some are used as ornamentals. Kale plants have green or purple leaves, and the central leaves do not form a head. Kales are considered to be closer to wild cabbage than most of the many domesticated forms of Brassica oleracea.
Bok choy, pak choi, or pok choi is a type of Chinese cabbage. Chinensis varieties do not form heads and have green leaf blades with lighter bulbous bottoms instead, forming a cluster reminiscent of mustard greens. Chinensis varieties are popular in southern China and Southeast Asia. Being winter-hardy, they are increasingly grown in Northern Europe. Now considered a subspecies of Brassica rapa, this group was originally classified as its own species under the name Brassica chinensis by Carl Linnaeus. They are a member of the family of Brassicaceae or Cruciferae, also commonly known as the mustards, the crucifers, or the cabbage family.
Gai lan or kai-lan is the Cantonese name for Chinese broccoli or Chinese kale; jie lan is its Mandarin name. It is a leaf vegetable with thick, flat, glossy blue-green leaves with thick stems, and florets similar to broccoli. Another Brassica oleracea cultivar, gai lan is in the group alboglabra. When gone to flower, its white blossoms resemble that of its cousin Matthiola incana or Hoary Stock. The flavor is very similar to that of broccoli, but slightly more bitter. It is also noticeably stronger than broccoli.
Choy sum is a leafy vegetable commonly used in Chinese cuisine. It is a member of the genus Brassica of the mustard family, Brassicaceae. Choy sum is a transliteration of the Cantonese name, which can be literally translated as "heart of the vegetable". It is also known as Chinese flowering cabbage.
Brassica oleracea is a plant species that includes many common foods as cultivars, including cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, Savoy cabbage, kohlrabi, and gai lan.
Brassica rapa is a plant species growing in various widely cultivated forms including the turnip ; napa cabbage, bomdong, bok choy, and rapini; and Brassica rapa subsp. oleifera, an oilseed which has many common names, including turnip rape, field mustard, bird rape, and keblock.
Brassica juncea, commonly brown mustard, Chinese mustard, Indian mustard, leaf mustard, Oriental mustard and vegetable mustard, is a species of mustard plant.
Savoy cabbage, is a variety of the plant species Brassica oleracea. Savoy cabbage is a winter vegetable and one of several cabbage varieties. It is thought to originate from England and the Netherlands. In the 18th century, it was introduced into Germany as "Savoyer Kohl". It is named after the Savoy Region in France. It has crinkled, emerald green leaves. The leaves are crunchy and tender. Known cultivars include 'Savoy King', 'Tundra' and 'Winter King'.
Suan cai is a traditional Chinese pickled Chinese cabbage or Chinese mustard, used for a variety of purposes. Suan cai is a unique form of pao cai, due to the ingredients used and the method of production.
The acephala group refers to any type of Brassica which grows without the central 'head' typical of many varieties of cabbage. These are included within the species Brassica oleracea, such as Kale. The name literally means "without a head" in contrast to those varieties known as capitata or "with a head". This group includes a number of species, both wild and cultivated, many of which are grown for their edible leaves and flowers.
Tatsoi is an Asian variety of Brassica rapa grown for greens. Also called tat choy, it is closely related to the more familiar Bok Choy. This plant has become popular in North American cuisine as well, and is now grown throughout the world.
Napa or napa cabbage is a type of Chinese cabbage originating near the Beijing region of China and is widely used in East Asian cuisine. Since the 20th century, it has also become a widespread crop in Europe, the Americas and Australia. In much of the world, this is the vegetable referred to as "Chinese cabbage". In Australia it also is referred to as "wombok".
Cabbage is a leafy vegetable, derived from the species Brassica oleracea.
Zha cai is a type of pickled mustard plant stem originating from Chongqing, China. The name may also be written in English as cha tsai, tsa tsai, jar choy, jar choi, ja choi, ja choy, or cha tsoi. In English, it is commonly known as Sichuan vegetable, Szechwan vegetable, or Chinese pickled vegetable, although all of these terms may also refer to any of a number of other Chinese pickles, including the several other types in the Sichuan province itself.