Thursday, 15 October 2009

Stir Fry Perfection

I love stir fry, it is a great way to incorporate your 5 day vegetable quota without the boredom or the calories.

Some people like stir fry because it is quick and easy. I will agree that the cooking is quick, but the secret to really great stir fry is to spend time cutting your vegetables. I will not accept that anything which comes out of the freezer should be called stir fry and I will even go as far to say that if you buy the pre-pack stir fry vegetables, you are still selling yourself short.

Some people say "life is too short", but making a stir fry with the combination of vegetables you like and cut properly and not butchered by some machine, doesn't take much time and will save you money- and you will make it up in the cooking time!

I don't think there is a recipe for stir fry, only some tips and once you get them right, you can create a dish which will be more than just mushy fried vegetables with over cooked noodles.

Firstly and most important choose vegetables you like, and play around with colour and texture. My example of this is the stir fry I made last night - I used only green vegetables and smoked pork

Secondly, take time to cut everything before you start cooking and have it all on hand. Once your wok is hot, you don't want to have to start chopping spring onions. If you doing it right, you shouldn't have the time to cut anything! Cut everything evenly, even the meat, this helps both in the cooking and in the eating.

Always cook the meat first, and remove when it is about 80% done. You then cook the harder vegetables first and then the soft vegetables and the meat. Keep everything moving in the pan and try not to over crowd your pan otherwise you'll have braised stir fry.

Your wok must be hot before you add the oil, and it must be an oil which can hold up to high temperatures. Olive oil doesn't work, it will burn.

Fourthly, I like to have a little water on hand (actually in a jug), especially for cooking harder vegetables like cauliflower, butternut or even broccoli. I have found that once I fried the hard vegetables for a while, adding a little water (2 tsp) helps to cook them, which stops them from burning and I don't have to add more oil.

I like sauce with my stir fry, especially when I serve it with rice. Our favourite is oyster sauce mixed with some water and a teaspoon of cornflour.

And lastly and very importantly, you must serve the stir fry straight away.

I hope you will try some of my tips, if you don't already and make lots of wonderful stir fries as I have.


Nina Timm said...

You are so right, prep is key when making a stir fry!!! Is that pork in your stir fry??Looks yummee!!

Kasha said...

Oyster sauce mix eh? Can't wait to try it! This looks amazing! Thank you!

Kit said...

I love stir fries too. We have them at least once a week. I haven't tried using oyster sauce though, will do so now.

The Woman said...

Great tips! Stirfry really is one of the best quick meals.

Jeremiah 17: 7-8

"Blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him. He will be like a tree planted by the water."

It is not your business to succeed, but to do what is right : when you have done so, the rest lies with God.
C.S. Lewis

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