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Paul Winalski

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RCP: two simple stir-fry dishes

by Paul Winalski » Mon Jun 29, 2020 12:55 pm

These are both from The Joyce Chen Cook Book. The first recipe is the first dish I ever cooked.

Stir-fried pork with bean sprouts

1/2 pound lean pork
2 TBS light soy sauce [a]
1 tsp shaoxing wine [bb]
1-1/2 TBS cornstarch (in all)
3 TBS water
1 tsp salt
1 stalk scallion
4 cups mung bean sprouts [c]
3 TBS cooking oil [d]

[1] Cut the pork into thin slices and then into thin 2-3" long shreds. Cut the scallions into shreds to match the pork. Marinate pork about 15 minutes with the soy sauce, sherry, and 1/2 TBS of the cornstarch. Mix the remaining 1 TBS cornstarch with 3 TBS water and set aside.

[2] Place the pan over high heat and then add the oil. When hot, add the salt and scallion and stir-fry for a few seconds, then add the pork mixture. Stir-fry until the pork is cooked through, about 3-4 minutes. Add the bean sprouts and cook until half-transparent, about 1 minute. Add the cornstarch mixture and stir-fry until the sauce thickens. Serve immediately.

Stir-fried beef with bell peppers

1 pound beef steak [e]
3 light soy sauce
1 TBS shaoxing wine
1 TBS cornstarch
1 tsp sugar
2 bell peppers (all green or a mixture)
4 TBS cooking oil (in all)
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/8-inch slice of ginger root (can be left unpeeled)

[1] Slice the beef across the grain into thin slices about 2" long and 1/4-1/2" wide. Mix the soy sauce, shaoxing wine, cornstarch, and sugar together, then marinate the beef slices in this mixture for about 15 minutes. Cut the bell peppers in half, remove the core, seeds, and white ribs, then cut into chunks about 1" square.

[2] Put the pan over high heat. When hot, add 2 TBS of the cooking oil and the salt. Stir-fry the peppers until they turn a darker green (less than 1 minute). Remove from the pan and set aside.

[3] Wipe the pan clean, return to heat, and add the remaining 2 TBS of oil. Add the ginger, give it a stir, then add the beef mixture. Stir-fry until the beef is nearly cooked through--not more than 2 minutes. Return the peppers to the pan and stir-fry until they are heated through and a brown sauce forms (about another minute). Remove the ginger slice and serve.

Notes

Stir-frying is a quick process. A thorough mis en place is required. Have everything cut up and measured out before you start frying.

[a] Light soy sauce vs. dark soy sauce, not "lite" as in low sodium. Make sure it's genuine, fermented soy sauce. It should be made from soy beans, flour, water, and salt. If it lists "soy extract" or food coloring on the label, avoid it. Kikkoman is almost universally available and is good. I prefer Pearl River Bridge brand.

[bb] Shaoxing wine is available in Asian markets and usually has salt added to avoid hassles with state liquor laws. Fino sherry, or cheap American domestic dry sherry, is a substitute.

[c] Canned bean sprouts are not acceptable.

[d] You want a fairly neutral oil, and one that can take high temperatures. Peanut, canola, and corn oil all work. I prefer peanut oil.

[e] Flank steak works well here because it's very easy to slice it across the grain and it's already of the proper width.

-Paul W.
Last edited by Paul Winalski on Mon Jun 29, 2020 5:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Larry Greenly

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Re: RCP: two simple stir-fry dishes

by Larry Greenly » Mon Jun 29, 2020 3:44 pm

Paul Winalski wrote:[d] You want a fairly neutral oil, and one that can take high temperatures. Peanut, canola, and corn oil all work. I prefer peanut oil.

-Paul W.



I agree with Paul that everything is mis en place. There's no time to fiddle.

I wouldn't even bother with the shaoxing wine w/the salt. Dry sherry works great.

I generally use peanut oil, but sometimes corn oil or avocado oil (which has high smoke point). I avoid canola oil; some brands can taste fishy at high heat. I learned my lesson one time when I used canola oil to make fish-flavored popcorn. Mmm, mmmm. :mrgreen:

I predict pretty soon, you'll have a pantry of Asian ingredients.

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