|Flowering garlic chives|
Rottler ex Spreng. 1825 not Roxb. 1832
Allium tuberosum (garlic chives, Oriental garlic, Asian chives, Chinese chives, Chinese leek) is a species of onion native to southwestern parts of the Chinese province of Shanxi, and cultivated and naturalized elsewhere in Asia and around the world.
Allium tuberosum is a perennial plant growing from a small, elongated bulb (about 10 mm, 13⁄32 inch, across), tough and fibrous, originating from a stout rhizome. It has a distinctive growth habit with strap-shaped leaves 1.5 to 8 mm (1⁄16 to 5⁄16 in) wide unlike either onion or garlic. It produces many white flowers in a round cluster (umbel) on stalks 25 to 60 cm (10 to 24 in) tall. It grows in slowly expanding perennial clumps, but also readily sprouts from seed. In warmer areas (USDA zone 8 and warmer), garlic chives may remain green all year round. In cold areas (USDA zones 7 to 4b), leaves and stalks completely die back to the ground, and resprout from roots or rhizomes in the spring.
Originally described by Johan Peter Rottler, the species name was validly published by Curt Polycarp Joachim Sprengel in 1825. A. tuberosum is classified within Allium in subgenus Butomissa (Salisb.) N. Friesen, section Butomissa (Salisb.) Kamelin, a very small group consisting of only A. tuberosum and A. ramosum L., which have been variously regarded as either one or two genetic entities.
Distribution and habitat
Originating in the Siberian–Mongolian–North Chinese steppes, but widely cultivated and naturalised. A. tuberosum is currently reported to be found growing wild in scattered locations in the United States. (Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Nebraska, Alabama, Iowa, Arkansas, Nebraska, and Wisconsin). However, it is believed to be more widespread in North America because of availability of seeds and seedlings of this species as an exotic herb and because of its high aggressiveness. This species is also widespread across much of mainland Europe and invasive in other areas of the world.
A late summer- to autumnal-blooming plant, A. tuberosum is one of several Allium species known as wild onion and/or wild garlic that in various parts of the world, such as Australia, are listed as noxious weeds or as invasive "serious high impact environmental and/or agricultural weeds that spread rapidly and often create monocultures".
Often grown as an ornamental plant in gardens, several cultivars are available. A. tuberosum is distinctive by blooming later than most native or naturalised species of Allium. It is cold-hardy to USDA hardiness zones 4–10 (−30 to +35 °F, −34 to 2 °C). Garlic chives are regarded as easy to grow in many conditions and may spread readily by seeds or can be intentionally propagated by dividing their clumps.
A number of varieties have been developed for either improved leaf (e.g. 'Shiva') or flower stem (e.g. 'Nien Hua') production. While the emphasis in Asia has been primarily culinary, in North America, the interest has been more as an ornamental. 'Monstrosum' is a giant ornamental cultivar.
|Hanyu Pinyin||jiǔ cài|
|Yale Romanization||gáu choi|
|Hokkien POJ||kú chhài|
Uses have included ornamental plants, including cut and dried flowers, culinary herb, and traditional medicine. Garlic chives have been widely cultivated for centuries in East Asia for its culinary value. The flat leaves, the stalks, and immature, unopened flower buds are used as flavouring. Another form is "blanched" by regrowing after cutting under cover to produce white-yellow leaves and a subtler flavor.
Chinese names for A. tuberosum (韭菜) vary depending on the plant part, and between Mandarin Chinese and Cantonese, as well as varying romanizations. For instance, the green leaves are jiu cai, the flower stem jiu cai hua, and blanched leaves jiu huang in Mandarin, but gau tsoi (kow choi), gau tsoi fa, and gau wong in Cantonese, respectively. Other renderings include cuchay, kucai, kuchay, or kutsay. The leaves are used as a flavoring in a similar way to chives, scallions, or garlic, and are included as a stir fry ingredient. In China, they are often used to make dumplings with a combination of egg, shrimp, and pork. They are a common ingredient in Chinese jiaozi dumplings and the Japanese and Korean equivalents. A Chinese flatbread similar to the scallion pancake may be made with garlic chives instead of scallions; such a pancake is called a jiucai bing (韭菜饼) or jiucai you bing (韭菜油饼). Garlic chives are also one of the main ingredients used with yi mein (E-Fu) dishes.
In Japan (where it is known as nira, Japanese: 韮), A. tuberosum is used for both garlic and sweet flavours, in soups and salads, and Chinese dishes.
Garlic chives, known as buchu (부추), are widely used in Korean cuisine. It can be eaten fresh as namul, pickled as kimchi and jangajji, and pan-fried in buchimgae (pancake). It is also one of the most common herbs served with gukbap (soup over rice).
- buchujeon – a type of buchimgae, made by cutting garlic chives, julienning aehobak, carrot, and onion, finely chopping Cheongyang chilli, then adding the ingredients into a thin flour dough and pan-frying the mixture in oil.
- buchukimchi – a type of kimchi, made by cutting garlic chives, salting them with aekjeot, then marinate the salted garlic chives with chilli powder. The kimchi is usually served with toasted sesame seeds sprinkled on top.
- dwaejigukbap – a type of pork bone gukbap, usually served with a lot of seasoned garlic chives.
- jaecheopguk – a type of clear guk (soup), made by boiling small freshwater clams called jaecheop and chopped garlic chives together. The soup is often eaten as a haejangguk (hangover soup).
In Nepal, cooks fry a curried vegetable dish of potatoes and A. tuberosum known as dunduko sag. In Manipur and other northeastern states of India, it is grown and used as a substitute for garlic and onion in cooking and is known as maroi nakupi.
In Thailand, they are known as gui chai.
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Books and monographs
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- Zeder, Melinda A.; Bradley, Daniel G; Emshwiller, Eve; Smith, Bruce D, eds. (2006). Documenting domestication: new genetic and archaeological paradigms. Berkeley, Calif.: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-24638-6. Retrieved 14 October 2015.
Articles and chapters
- Friesen, N; Fritsch, RM; Blattner, Frank R (2006). "Phylogeny and new intrageneric classification of Allium (Alliaceae) based on nuclear ribosomal DNA ITS sequences" (PDF). Aliso. 22: 372–395. Retrieved 13 October 2015.
- Li, Q.-Q.; Zhou, S.-D.; He, X.-J.; Yu, Y.; Zhang, Y.-C.; Wei, X.-Q. (21 October 2010). "Phylogeny and biogeography of Allium (Amaryllidaceae: Allieae) based on nuclear ribosomal internal transcribed spacer and chloroplast rps16 sequences, focusing on the inclusion of species endemic to China". Annals of Botany. 106 (5): 709–733. doi:10.1093/aob/mcq177. PMC . PMID 20966186.
- Oyuntsetseg, B; Blattner, F. R.; Friesen, N. (2012). "Diploid Allium ramosum from East Mongolia: A missing link for the origin of the crop species A. tuberosum?". Erforsch. biol. Ress. Mongolei (Halle/Saale). 12: 415–424.
- Saini, N; Wadhwa, S; Singh, G. K. (2013). "Comparative study between cultivated garlic (Allium sativum) and wild garlic (Allium tuberosum)". Global R Trad Rep. 1 (1): 12–24.
- Blattner, Frank R; Friesen, N. Relationship between Chinese chive (Allium tuberosum) and its putative progenitor A. ramosum as assessed by random amplified polymorphic DNA (RAPD). Retrieved 14 October 2015. in Zeder et al (2006, Chapter 10. pp. 134–142)
- Fritsch, RM; Friesen, N. Evolution, domestication and taxonomy., in Rabinowitch & Currah (2003, pp. 5–30)
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- Goh, Kenneth (30 March 2015). "Shredded Chicken Braised E-Fu Noodles (鸡丝韭黄伊府面）". Guai Shu Shu. Retrieved 18 October 2015.
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