I'm in the midst of a bit of a stir fry binge. It was always one of my favorites when my mom cooked one up as a kid but then I kind of forgot about them. Over the summer I was in Madison at the Dane County Farmers Market and came across this booth specializing in cooking oils. I was very intrigued by their chili oil which I was told makes for a great stir fry. So I bought a bottle from Savory Accents and brought it home and kind of forgot about it until I saw it while looking for something else. Suddenly the urge for a stir fry hit and I've made what feels like one a week since then. The beautiful thing about building one is there are no rules except the use of a main ingredient and some veggies and a starch. Technically you dont even need a wok. One key you must remember is to get your pan nice and hot. Nothing goes in until the oil starts sizzling. Here are some other quick tips.
First up aside from the main ingredient (beef, chicken, pork, seafood, tofu etc...) you need to choose what it will go over. Rice? Noodles? Doesn't matter just make sure you follow tips if you choose noodles. Pictured below is what has become my standard recipe. I'll share it here but remember there are no rules. If you cant find this, just add that. If it seems like it tastes good, go for it.
T's Asian Noodle Stir Fry
- 1.5 pounds cooked chicken thighs or breasts (I prefer thigh and grill mine)
- One package of Noodles (Asian preferred but linguine etc will work)
- Green Onions (Chopped, reserve tops)
- Bell Peppers
- Baby Bok Choy
- Stiy Fry Oil
- Sesame Oil (Regular works fine, but it spits pretty heavily)
- Stir Fry Sauce (I think the classic from House of Tsang works just fine)
1) Start boiling water for your noodles and when ready cook according to package. Chop up all your vegetables into bite size pieces and finely mince both the garlic and the ginger and set aside. Take your grilled thighs and chop those down too. When water is ready drop the noodles in and cook. When done rinse the noodles thoroughly with cold water and then lube them with the sesame oil and set aside.
2) Get your stir fry oil nice and hot and then cook portions of the noodles until they start to brown up and crisp a little bit.You can add some flavor to them by throwing some of the stir sauce in the pan for them to cook with. When all noodles are fried, set them aside and add more oil.
3) When oil is extra hot add a few drops of the stir fry sauce and throw the chicken in it to brown up. Take that out and continue to make sure your pan is extra hot before dropping veggies in. The key is blistering them upon entry and this only happens if the pan is scorching. Add a little more stir fry sauce and cook those thru and add garlic/ginger and cook thru for a couple minutes and dinner is ready. Add green onion tops as garnish.
a new regular in my rotation___________________________________
If you have a nice Asian grocery store near you I'd suggest making your own chow fun. I just cook the noodles as so and do the sesame oil coating trick before throwing them in a fry pan. But again you need to make sure it's hot. Beef works best with this dish in my opinion.
Better than most take out spots___________________________________
BBQ Pork and Shrimp Shrimp Stir Fry
This is made virtually the same way my recipe up top is except I use leftover BBQ pork when I have it. Some nights I might make a Chinese marinated tenderloin and then chop up the leftovers and crisp them up for fried noodles or even rice. It's always a nice dinner on a weekday night.
Cajun Pork Stir Fry
Here's another idea I came up with one night. If you're using raw meat that needs to be cooked for your fry and not leftovers, there's a better way than others to cook it so that it too gets nice and browned and doesnt come out looking steamed and grey. I prefer to use a pork tenderloin which I cut up into little 3-4 inch strips. Size doesn't matter just make sure you coat them with corn starch. I also add Cajun seasoning and then cook the strips in batches, in a HOT pan. Put those on a plate when done and add the holy trinity (Bell Peppers, Onion, Celery) into the pan and fry those up. Serve over rice with plenty of hot sauce.
Chinese Rib Stir Fry
Recipe from Serious Eats (I used St. Louis Cut Spare Ribs)
Here's one last sensational plate I made a few weeks back. I got some beautiful STL cut spares from Fresh Farms in Niles but didnt have time to smoke them so I marinated them overnight according to the SE recipe and cooked them as so. Except I browned them in my wok with extra glaze and served those over white rice with a Szechuan green bean recipe that I added an assortment of bell peppers too. As good as it was my nose was almost annihilated when I fried the chili paste for the beans. Be careful. That's it for this round-up.
Chinese Stir Fry Spareribs___________________________________
See ya next time @chibbqking