Alright, everything's cut up, your stir-fry sauce is made (or purchased for you lazy bastiches out there), you’ve decided which starch you’re using (or, like me for the years I didn’t know about rice noodles, decided that starch is for sissies). It’s time to cook this sonuvagun.
OK, first thing, heat your pan on the stovetop at medium-high heat (about 6 if the dial on your range features numbers) and toss in the sauce, ginger and garlic (or, if you decide to make the sauce well ahead of time, add the ginger and garlic to the sauce, it’ll spread the flavours out in the sauce). Wait till it’s bubbling, then add other ingredients. Now, when you add the other ingredients is a bit tricky. So, I’ll break it down this way:
- chicken/pork/beef (the latter two if cubed), carrots: add first, cook for 5 minutes then add rest of veggies
- pork/beef (if sliced thin): add first, cook for 3 minutes, and then add rest of veggies
- veggies: toss in based on instructions above, stir-fry (as in stir with a spatula while it fries) for about 10 minutes or until veggies reach desired tenderness and meat is fully cooked
- shrimp/scallops: these actually take less time than veggies, so add them after about 2 minutes of cooking the veggies.
Once all ingredients are cooked, either toss in noodles if using, or spoon over hot cooked rice (or over nothing). I usually eat my stir-fries in a bowl to keep the sauce from spilling.
Now, here comes the last of choices: how to eat a stir-fry? Do you use a fork or dare to use chopsticks. Well, it depends on a few things: 1 – How clumsy are you? 2 – How hungry are you? 3 – Will it impress your date? I think once you figure that out, you’ll be up for the challenge.
So, that’s it for the stir-fry. My next entry will focus less on meal making and more on important ingredients.
Until then, Excelsior!