Thursday, February 28, 2013

On Stir Frying Vegetables

We are always trying to eat more vegetables, more greens.  A quick stir fry is one of the fastest, easiest, tastiest ways to make a last minute vegetable side dish to suit any meal.  Romaine lettuce leaves, warm and slightly wilted, tumbled in a sauce of garlic and chillies.  After that – the same recipe and method but this time with halved baby bok choy.  We could not stop eating either of these.  Here is a recipe and a stir fry technique that any of us can take into our kitchens and adapt to just about any vegetable we find in the ref.  The technique for a vegetable stir fry is the same no matter which vegetables you use.  This stir fry of romaine lettuce (and the second of baby bok choy) can just as easily be made with red peppers and mushrooms, asparagus and snow peas, or bok choy and green beans.
The Basics of stir frying vegetables starts with; don’t crowd the pan, stick to no more than four cups of chopped hard or medium hard vegetables or eight to twelve cups chopped leafy greens in a 14-inch wok in order to avoid crowding the pan. A saute pan is fine for some stir frying, but not great for greens like in this recipe; it’s simply not deep enough to hold greens the way a wok does.
Dry the vegetables.  When stir frying anything from snow peas to lettuce, it’s important that the vegetables are very dry.  Otherwise, the vegetables will steam and braise in the pan and lose their crisp texture.  Giving the vegetables a whirl in a salad spinner is the easiest solution, but you can also pat them thoroughly with kitchen towels.  All stir frying is quick, but stir fry of just vegetables goes even quicker.  Don’t walk away from the stove or pause to answer a text.  Once the oil is in the pan, a stir fry needs your full attention.  For two to three minute recipes, we think we can handle that.

1.    STIR FRIED LETTUCE  (or baby bok choy) with garlic chillies:

Stir Fry Vegetables
Stir Fry Vegetables

  • 1 medium head of romaine lettuce, cut crosswise into 1 inch wide pieces, about 8 cups. Or  8 to 12 cups of baby bok choy, sliced in half lengthwise.
For the sauce:
  • 2 tbsp dry sherry or Shao Hsing rice wine
  • 1 tbsp chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoon soy sauce.
  • 3 medium cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 tsp minced jalapeno chillies, with seeds (optional)
  • 2 tbsp peanut or vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground white pepper
  • Cut up the ingredients.  It is very important that all the ingredients are cut as directed in the ingredient list.  The most important key to making a good stir fry is cutting each ingredient to a uniform size as specified above.  Cut the vegetables and set them aside in a bowl.  Cut the aromatics and set them aside as well.
  • In a small bowl, combine the sherry (or rice wine), broth and soy sauce.
  • Set the bowl of vegetables, aromatics, and sauce near your stove.  Also have a very small bowl of water next to the stove. 
  • Heat the wok.  Turn on the stove burner, as high as it will go.  Set a 14 inch wok over the high heat burner.  To determine when the wok is hot enough, start flicking droplets of water from the small bowl into the pan after 30 seconds.  As soon as bead of water evaporates within 1 top 2 seconds of contact, the wok is heated and ready to stir fry.  Do not overheat the wok.
  • Pull the wok off the heat and add 1 tbsp of oil.  Pick up the pan and carefully swirl it to coat the bottom and sides.  (If the wok smokes wildly the moment you add the oil you’ve overheated the wok.  Remove the wok from the heat and let it cool for a few minutes.  When it’s cool enough to handle carefully remove the oil with paper towels, wash the wok, and start again.)
  • Add the aromatics to the wok.  Put the wok back on the heat. Add the garlic and chillies (if using), and stir fry them for 10 seconds or until fragrant.  
  • Push the garlic up the sides of the wok and add the lettuce or bok choy, or whatever else you’re using.
  • Sprinkle salt and pepper over top
  • From this time on, the vegetables will cook for 2 to 2 ½ minutes. 
  • Stir fry for I minute or until the lettuce or vegetables begin to wilt. 
  • Pour the sauce mixture around and down the sides of the pan instead of directly into the center to prevent from cooling the pan and lowering the cooking temperature. Stir fry and toss to coat lettuce.  Cook for another 30 to 60 seconds and serve hot.
If your are interested, Check our other latest Vegetable Stir Fry Recipe here.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Stir Fry Recipes for the Home Manager

Common kitchen managers are the wives of the American family.  As a salute to the American Wife, the Home Manager, here are a few recipes that can ease the long hours of kitchen food preparation at home and yet provide the awesome dish the family desires. 


Stir Fry Recipe Sauce
Stir Fry Recipe 

When you finally make it home after work, you want something hearty that can be made from ingredients on hand.  This stir fry, with its zippy sauce, is the answer.

  • 2 onions
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1 tbsp (15ml) vegetable oil
  • ¾ pound (349gms) stir fry beef strips
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp Worchestershire Sauce
  • ½ tsp dried rosemary
  • ¼ salt
  • ¼ tsp black pepper
  • In a small bowl, whisk together beef stock, vinegar cornstarch, paprika, thyme, Worchestershire Sauce, rosemary, salt, pepper and cayenne, and set aside.
  • Cut onions, in half lengthwise, then slice lengthwise into thin strips.  Seed and cut red and green peppers into thin strips.  Set aside.
  • In a large nonstick skillet, heat half of the oil over high heat; stir fry beef and garlic for about 2 minutes or until meat is browned but still pink inside.  Transfer to plate. 
  • Add the remaining oil to the skillet, cook onions and red and green peppers, stirring often, for 4 minutes or just until starting to soften.  Pour in sauce, cook, stirring, for another 2 minutes or until well coated and heated through.  Pour over beef on the plate and served while it is hot.
2.    STEAK AND HARVEST VEGETABLE FAJITAS (Serves four persons).

Stir Fry Vegetables
Stir Fry Vegetables

  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 12 oz (340 gms) beef stir fry strips
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 2 carrots, halved lengthwise and sliced
  • 1 sweet red pepper, sliced
  • 1 zucchini halved lengthwise and sliced.
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp (10ml) chili powder
  • ½ tsp (2 ml) salt
  • ¼ tsp (1 ml) ground cumin
  • ½ cup (125ml) salsa
  • 2 tbsp (30 ml) lime juice
  • 1 dash hot pepper sauce
  • 8 large flour tortillas
  • In a nonstick skillet, heat oil over medium heat, stir fry beef, in batches, for 2 to 3 minutes or until browned but still pink inside.  Transfer to plate.
  • Add onion and carrots to the skillet, cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until onion is softened.  Add red pepper, zucchini, garlic, chili powder, salt and cumin, cook for 3 minutes or until tender crisp.
  • Add salsa, lime juice and hot pepper sauce.  Return beef and any accumulated juices to pan, cook for 1 minutes or until hot. 
  • Meanwhile, stack tortillas and wrap in foil; bake in 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) oven for 8 to 10 minutes, or until warmed. Wrap beef mixture in tortillas, serve hot.
  • Enjoy your special meals this season.  Life is good after all.
 Still craving for Vegetarian stir fry recipe? Surf  here.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Beef Stir Fry Recipes for This Season

Beef stir frying at home can be fun and provide a fast preparation method to make a main dish for the family.   Here are some of the most popular stir fry recipes that can be done easily at home. 

Stir Fry Recipe
Stir Fry Recipe


This is a delicious easy stir fry with a twist.  Hope you like it as much as my family does.

  • ¼ cup teriyaki sauce
  • ¼ cup water
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 large marinating steak cut into strips or precut beef strips
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 brocolli florets, cut
  • ¼ cup of diagonally sliced red pepper
  • ¼ cup of diagonally sliced green pepper
  • ¼ cup of diagonally sliced carrots.
  • A can of corn on the cobs.
  • 2 tbsps cornstarch.
  • Salt and black pepper to tast
  •  Mix teriyaki sauce, water, brown sugar, together add beef strips. Marinate for 5 to 6 hours.
  • In a large wok or skillet, add olive oil, onion and beef strips.  Stir fry until browned.  Reserve marinade from beef.  Set aside.
  • In a separate large frying pan, add 2 tbsps of olive oil.  Add garlic, brocolli, peppers, carrots, and corn.  Fry for about 4 minutes on medium heat until cooked. 
  • Drain excess fats from beef.  Add reserve marinade and cornstarch into beef simmer for 3 minutes until thickened.  Add the vegetables, stir fry and cook for 2 more minutes. 
  • Serve hot over basmati rice or

If you add rice or light noodles with this recipe you have a very nice supper.  My family loves veggies and use tofu, beef or chicken, for this recipe.

  •  ¼ cup honey
  • ¼ cup prepared stir fry sauce (available in groceries).
  •  ¼ to ½ tsp crushed red pepper flake
  •  4 tsps vegetable oil
  • 2 cups small brocolli floret
  • 2 cups mushroom
  • 1 small onion, cut into wedges and separated
  • 1 medium carrot, cut diagonally.
  • Plus we added a package of boneless rib-cut beef, but you can add chicken or whatever else you like.  Or you can keep it as a veggie dish.
  • Make the honey-Asian sauce.  You can buy any type of premade stir fry sauce you want.  But we prefer original.
  • Mix that ¼ cup in with ¼ cup of honey and then sprinkle crushed red pepper flake into the mixture. 
  • Stir to mix all the parts up together. 
  • Slice up the vegetables into bite sizes. 
  • The recipe calls for only 2 cups each, but that’s a really small amount, so just do whatever you feel like and depending on how many people you are feeding.  4 cups of each can serve about 4 people comfortably. 
  • At this point separate the process – cooking the vegetables first and then to cook the meat last, which worked out perfectly.  
  • Put all the chopped veggies into a wok and then add olive oil, salt, and garlic powder.
  • Tenderize the meat with some olive oil, salt and garlic powder.
  •  Chop the meat horizontally into smaller pieces that are easier to pick at and chew with the rest of the stir fry. 
  • Now you can quickly cook the meat by itself in another dish while letting the already cooked vegetables have a rest.  After the meat is cooked to your taste, add it all together.
  •  Serve hot.
Looking for more  Stir Fry Recipe? Check us here.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Stir Fry – Fast Cooking Methods

One of the most common stir fry recipes in the world today is the Shanghai Stir Fry Beef & Broccoli Dish.  The ingredients for cooking this dish are;
Stir Fry Recipe
Stir Fry Recipe

  • Small flank steak (1 ¼ to 1 ½ lb.)
  • 3 tablespoon soy sauce.
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • Kosher salt
  • ¾ lb. broccoli crowns, cut into 2 inch florets (to yield about 4 heaping cups.)
  • ¼ cup canola or peanut oil.
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed.
  • 2 inch piece ginger peeled and cut into thin matchsticks.
  • ¼ teaspoon red chili flakes.
  • 2 tablespoon oyster sauce.

Before you start cooking, make sure all the ingredients are properly prepared according to the above descriptions.  Bring every ingredient close to the cooking area, within reach by the wok.   Begin to make magic when ready.
Bring 2 quarts of water with 2 teaspoon kosher salt to a boil.  Slice the steak in half lengthwise and then cut crosswise into thin slices.  In a medium bowl, stir 1 tablespoon of soy sauce with the sherry, cornstarch, and ½ teaspoon salt.  Add the steak, toss to coat, and let sit for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, blanch the broccoli in the boiling water until it softens to a tender crunch, 2 to 3 minutes.  Drain in a colander and then rinse under cold water until the broccoli cools. Set a large, heavy skillet or a large wok over high heat for 1 minute.   Pour in two tablespoons of oil and when it starts to shimmer, add the beef.   Cook the beef, stirring frequently, until it loses most but not all of its raw color, for about 2 minutes.  Transfer to a large plate.  Add the remaining 2 tablespoon oil and garlic, ginger, chili flakes, and ¼ teaspoon salt. 

Stir fry for 30 seconds.  Add the broccoli and 3 tablespoons of water and cook, stirring to incorporate any browned bits on the bottom of the pan, until the broccoli warms through, about 1 minute.   Stir in the beef, the oyster sauce, and the remaining 2 tablespoon soy sauce.  Cook by stirring for about 1 minute.  Serve immediately while it is hot and in steaming flavor. This Shanghai Beef Broccoli Dish is one of the most popular Chinese dishes serve in Chinese Restaurants all over the world.  Easy to prepare, this can be done at home given the time and ingredients to prepare the dish perfectly.  While Chinese Dishes are commonly popular in every country in the world, this particular dish is made simple to be done at your very own kitchen household.

When trying out to stir fry this particular dish, others have successfully tried using frozen vegetables from their refrigerators, without the broccoli.  With the right condiments, they were successful in creating beef with vegetables using the same procedures as above.  It is fun to experiment on using other vegetables and maybe some new herbs to add flavor to your taste.  What is important in this dish are the ginger, soy sauce, the oyster sauce, and chili flakes. 

Try this at home and surprise your family.  Happy cooking to everyone. 

If your are interested, Check our other latest Recipe for Stir fry here.