01 January 2010

i have yet to make a really spectacular stir fry, yet it is something i make all of the time. my dad likes it with strip loin steak, but de-boned chicken thighs or breasts are good too. i buy steaks that the marbling in the meat will be easy to trim. one is good for about 5 portions. brown rice is good, i like basmati, and white rice will do as well.

the issue with stir fry is that there is a lot of chopping, so i do it when repetitive activity will be calming. i don't make a fancy sauce, so most of the flavour comes from aromatics. i slice an onion in half, and cut it in to narrow half moons. i dice a tablespoon of ginger, or leave it in inch-long rectangular slices. i add a couple cloves of garlic, which i mash through a garlic press (easier than dicing). cut into thin strips the meat cooks quickly, and when it is yet to brown i add the onion, ginger and garlic. did i mention you add about a tablespoon of cooking oil (olive, grapeseed, canola)?

the fun part of stir fry is the variety of vegetables you get to pick to go in. i hate carrots and green peppers. i like brocolli, chard, bok choy, gai lan... dark green things. red or yellow peppers, green onions, zucchini, mushrooms, snow or snap peas and long beans get a neutral review from me. those get chopped and added once the onions are a little less cooked than you'd like them to be when you eat them. when i was a teenager i used to eat bowls of vegetables and meat cooked like this.

sauce can be bought from the store, which i recommend you do if you're not normally a big cook. choose something that looks promising and is in the $1.50 a pouch range. one sauce i do make involves 3 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoon oyster sauce, 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch, and a scant half cup of cold water. i like to add a few shakes of red chili flakes. none of these things are very expensive once you get past the start up cost. the sauce should help the vegetables steam, not boil, until they are tender crisp, which is just a couple minutes. the cooking time for the whole thing should be a little less than it takes the rice to cook (15-20 minutes), with maybe another ten required for meditative chopping.

the vegetables make me feel very good.


Factory Supervisor said...

Stir fry is my all time favourite;

my sauce is;

3 tablespoons toasted seasame seed oil
3 tablespoons light soy sauce
3 tablespoons of sweet chili dipping sauce
1/2 tablespoon chinese five spice.

wrenna said...

except for the chili sauce, i have those things. thank you for the suggestion Factory!