It's called tah tsai (thank you Martin) or brassica campestris var narinosa. Anyway, what appealed to me was its rich, dark green color and rugose leaves (deeply wrinkled). It just seemed to shout "super nutrition"!
The ones I get are grown across lake Kitaura from us - just 5 kilometers away. Eating local.
A lot of people add it to a stir fry or put it in soup, but I like it raw in a salad with other nutritious greens like chingensai (a kind of bak choy), beans, and veggies (like paprika and broccoli). Sometimes with plants like this or spinach I lightly "water fry" them. One of the great things about a plant based diet is that you can mix and match whatever you have. Nothing complicated about it.
Isn't it gorgeous?
Update: photo of lunch on Monday with tah tsai in the salad:
I make my own salad dressing now so I can avoid oil (read empty calories that also have a really bad effect on one's arteries) and sugar and salt which are so often found in commercial dressings. Here's a recipe I got from Dr. Joel Fuhrman of DiseaseProof.com .
Orange Cashew Dressing
1 orange, peeled and seeded
2 tablespoons (30 ml) raw cashews
(I soak them for a few hours to make them easier to blend)
1 tablespoon (30 ml) of Dr. Fuhrman's Blood Orange Vinegar
(I use balsamic vinegar here)
1 carrot, grated
orange juice (optional)
lemon juice (optional)
Just blend the ingredients in a high powered blender until smooth and creamy. Add some orange or lemon juice to thin dressing, if necessary. The cashews give it a creamy taste and the vegetable fat in them helps your body get more of the nutrients from your salad.
I definitely want to try growing tah tsai next year.