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Apr 13, 2013 05:02 PM

Chives - did I get the right ones

I bought a wok from the and I thought I would get a bit better at stir frying.
I never knew that chives are different than green onion, always thought it's the same thing.
So today for first time I saw chives in chinese store and got them. However these ones have root cut off, and have some flower on the tip, the label says Flowering Chive Bud.
I also saw other ones when getting out of the market labeled Chives and they had no root and nothing on the tip, looked like green onion wiout a root.

Do both of these are the same, just a differet variation of a plant ? I want to stir fry, and also wokshop says to stir fry chives to season the wok.
Attaching photo, hope you can see it.

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  1. I think there are 3 kinds -
    - a narrow leaf that is used in Western cooking (e.g. chives in a French omelet)
    - a wider leaf Asian, sometimes labeled garlic chives. I've been buy those, and using them along with green onions, and sometimes as a substitute for garlic.
    - these buds. I've tried them since they are more expensive.

    I haven't seen any of chives with the root on (as with green onions).

    1 Reply
    1. re: paulj

      I grow both the narrow, rounded leaf one and the wider, flatter garlic chives.

      Both meet my criteria for being perennial, attractive so I can grow them amongst the other flowers and shrubs in the garden (former with mauve flowers, in late spring, latter with white flowers in August) - and, of course, usable.

      Brother in law tells me that, in Mallorca, the small bulbs of rounded leaf one are pickled.

    2. Flowering chives, garlic chives, Chinese chives, and flowering garlic chives are the same plant.
      Garlic/Chinese chives are the leaves of the plant.
      The flowering chives are stalks of the plant allowed to mature to the bud stage and should be harvested/used before they actually flower. They are a bit stronger/more pungent than garlic/Chinese chives (the leaves).

      You can use either one as long as you realize the flowering chives will have a bit stronger flavor and you may have to adjust the amount used based on that.

      3 Replies
      1. re: hannaone

        Regular chives flower too, and are still different from garlic chives. Not sure if the local Chinese market would sell the same sort of flowering chives that grow in my Western garden, but I would not say all flowering and all garlic chives are the same plant. IME, garlic chives are flatter and what I consider regular chives are rounder.

        1. re: babette feasts

          Yes, western chives also flower, but I have not heard them being marketed as flowering chives. Not that they haven't been, just that I haven't heard of it.

          1. re: hannaone

            Understood. Thank you for clarifying.

        1. It's easy to grow chives from seed in a pot placed in sunny window. Doesn't take much space and you'll have a year-round supply.

          1 Reply
          1. re: DonShirer

            And they are ridiculously hardy and last forever. I have chives in a pot on my urban deck that have survived for about 15 years, two major transplants and tough winters. They just keep on chive jivin' (sorry, couldn't help myself).

          2. <I never knew that chives are different than green onion>

            Depending who you talked to, some do use them interchangeably. To echo hannaone, there are many different kind of "chive". In term of Chinese cooking, Chinese chives and Chinese green onion are two different plants which taste quiet differently.



            <I also saw other ones when getting out of the market labeled Chives and they had no root and nothing on the tip>

            That is probably the same thing you bought except the planets were not allowed to mature to the flowering stage.