thread of stir-frying

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i like to stir fry like every day recently. what is a good, interesting stir-fry sauce recipe with not too many calories? i want to make a jar of something and just keep it in the refrigerator.

harbl, Sunday, 28 February 2010 17:12 (ten years ago) link

usually i just do this combination of:
soy sauce
sesame oil
sambal oelek
brown sugar

but it's redundant because hoisin sauce is made of those things except the chile sauce, and it's also a lot of calories per serving. that's why it's good.

harbl, Sunday, 28 February 2010 17:13 (ten years ago) link

it's maybe not 'interesting' but i tend t0o make up a jar of sorta-teriyaki sauce:
soy sauce
maybe sugar, maybe sesame oil, sometimes grated fresh ginger

it is glorious w/ mushrooms.

lords of hyrule (c sharp major), Sunday, 28 February 2010 18:22 (ten years ago) link

today i made tofu and chinese broccoli with shallots and ginger and switched the hoisin for a couple tsp of rice vinegar. was good.

harbl, Sunday, 28 February 2010 19:03 (ten years ago) link

hmm I usually season the oil with garlic and ginger first. then I will maybe add some dark soy sauce for color.

noted schloar (dyao), Monday, 1 March 2010 01:34 (ten years ago) link

if you want something close to the taste of hoisin but w/o the sweetness you can try oyster sauce (which is just as salty and MSGy but not as sweet).

noted schloar (dyao), Monday, 1 March 2010 01:34 (ten years ago) link

yeah i put ginger in before the vegetables. sometimes garlic but usually i only feel like mincing one thing at a time.

harbl, Monday, 1 March 2010 01:40 (ten years ago) link

anyway I usually just freestyle it depending on what I'm feeling like. like sometimes it'll just be dark soy sauce, sometimes I'll add some light soy sauce, sometimes I'll add some chicken stock, a little bit of sugar. whatever! hey! but make sure it's hot!

noted schloar (dyao), Monday, 1 March 2010 01:45 (ten years ago) link

yup i figured out to turn up the (gas) heat all the way. my pot is heavy-bottomed stainless steel, not a wok, but it works.

harbl, Monday, 1 March 2010 01:58 (ten years ago) link

I've been making some pretty good stirfried broccoli lately, using a bittman recipe:

add oil to pan, get it hot, etc.
add broccoli, stir around til bright green and glossy from the evaporating water
add some vegetable stock mixed with salt and sugar to taste, stir around some more until it evaporates, serve

it's pretty good and the broccoli stays crunchy but soft on the outside. you can add shiitake mushrooms & soy sauce for more flavor.

noted schloar (dyao), Monday, 1 March 2010 02:18 (ten years ago) link

my lazy-ass electric stove stir fry, high in calories, fat, and all things tasty:

Let some frozen chicken breasts (purchased a 12 pack at Costco) thaw a little
Chop up the chicken into cubes, taking advantage of the fact partially-frozen chicken is easily cubeable
Heat my flat-bottomed carbon steel wok on high heat, add peanut oil
Add some minced garlic (cheated and used the pre-chopped stuff) and ginger (grated this off a block I have in the freezer) and stir it around until it's a little browned and aromatic
Throw the chicken cubes into the oil, and pour in some soy sauce

while the chicken is browning/thawing, I make the following mixture, with the amounts and contents varying based on taste and availability:
soy sauce
more minced ginger
garlic chili sauce
balsamic vinegar
sesame oil
corn starch to thicken it up / make it stick

After the chicken is over halfway cooked, toss this mixture in and keep stirring to coat the chicken. About a minute or two before it's done, I usually toss in a bunch of scallions from a container of chopped ones I have in the freezer

Serve with some vegetables, either thrown in or prepared separately

I ran out of jasmine rice so I cheated and made thai sticky rice in my ricemaker and just threw the chicken on top. To be honest, I had no vegetables with this the last two times. Uh. yeah.

mh, Tuesday, 2 March 2010 15:09 (ten years ago) link

While I'm waiting to win the lottery so I can do a full kitchen remodel, I'm thinking of buying a standalone propane burner for the back deck so I can stir-fry with the proper amt of BTUs.

Hervé Grillechaise (WmC), Tuesday, 2 March 2010 15:19 (ten years ago) link

I might try such a thing someday, but for now, I have decided I can cook food that I find enjoyable in wok conditions that are far from prime

mh, Tuesday, 2 March 2010 15:57 (ten years ago) link

WmC, my parents have one and it's pretty great/cheap alternative to a proper burner. also, it's nice because everything in your oil won't end up covered in a thin layer of oil.

noted schloar (dyao), Tuesday, 2 March 2010 16:04 (ten years ago) link

if you like a sour stir fry sauce, I sometimes make the following:

1/3 soy sauce
1/3 sugar
1/3 chinkiang vinegar

chives, garlic, and ginger to marinate in - add corn starch and dissolve before using

cube the chicken a la mh's method. cook it until it's tender but not quite fully done. remove the chicken. add the sauce to the pan, heat it through. toss the chicken back into the wok, toss until chicken is evenly caramel brown. mmmmm

noted schloar (dyao), Tuesday, 2 March 2010 16:06 (ten years ago) link

you can add diced bell peppers and peanuts and peppers to this recipe. make sure to cook the vegetables separately (remove the chicken) so as not to overcook the chicken. yeaaaaaah

noted schloar (dyao), Tuesday, 2 March 2010 16:06 (ten years ago) link

Yeah, standalone propane burners are pretty easy to find now that deep-fried turkey has become a done thing. I don't's a pretty big expense for I don't know how many meals.

Hervé Grillechaise (WmC), Tuesday, 2 March 2010 16:30 (ten years ago) link

I'm not familiar with chinkiang vinegar and will look for it at the asian grocery. Is it similar to any others?

I tried making a filipino-style adobo thing a while ago, but I pretty obviously need to work on the technique and ingredient balance after eating my first batch.

mh, Thursday, 4 March 2010 15:30 (ten years ago) link

I have learned not to cook with the sesame oil - sesame oil is too low heat, it's a finishing oil.

La religion est une fatigante solution de paresse (Michael White), Thursday, 4 March 2010 15:37 (ten years ago) link

Oh certainly, I have only ever really used it as a flavoring ingredient. Is it even possible to cook in it? Maybe at lower temperatures.

mh, Thursday, 4 March 2010 17:39 (ten years ago) link

Not really but my wok is seasoned enough that I don't usually have to use much oil anyway.

La religion est une fatigante solution de paresse (Michael White), Thursday, 4 March 2010 17:41 (ten years ago) link

mh, chinkiang vinegar is pretty standard - the one I get has a yellowish label? you should be able to find it at any chinese grocer

noted schloar (dyao), Friday, 5 March 2010 00:41 (ten years ago) link

ten months pass...

i keep meaning to get chinkiang vinegar. i just recently remembered how much i used to stir fry and don't remember why i stopped so i'm gonna do something like this chicken/pineapple thing but i am adding jalapeno peppers and cabbage. i keep looking at "real" chinese recipes for stuff and feel like, eh, i'm never gonna do this right & like my stuff better so i just make things up most of the time.

positive reflection is the key (harbl), Sunday, 9 January 2011 21:51 (ten years ago) link

oh also i realized it didn't have any ginger in it so i added it. this is gonna be good except i didn't realize quite how much a pound of chicken is so the pot was a little overcrowded and it will be a little soggier than i like. it's ok!

positive reflection is the key (harbl), Sunday, 9 January 2011 23:14 (ten years ago) link

two months pass...

dyao should i get a wok? what kind is good and cheap?

Secrets will not Block Justice (harbl), Monday, 4 April 2011 10:27 (nine years ago) link

oh man. I have a lot to say about this. I have not mastered the art of wok cooking. :/

dayo, Monday, 4 April 2011 16:05 (nine years ago) link

I think basically, unless you have a high heat source and want to cook things at a high heat, a nonstick is probably better for almost everything you would want to do w/ a stir fry

dayo, Monday, 4 April 2011 16:10 (nine years ago) link

really? i was watching this video
it is on normal gas stove. i really don't like to use nonstick for anything except eggs. last night i made the pineapple chicken in my stainless. the chicken came out perfect, no sticking w/ excellent browning.

Secrets will not Block Justice (harbl), Monday, 4 April 2011 21:28 (nine years ago) link

hah! well, afaict, the advantages of a wok are

-high heat
-adaptable cooking (can just as easily cook for 1 as for 10)

I think choosing a wok is probably the hardest part. there are the cast irons and the carbon steels but I don't know which ones are better, or which brands are reputable. there are also many schools of thought about seasoning a wok (some use oil, some use lard, some use big chunks of pig fat) (some say the only thing that should touch the wok is hot water, no soap).

what are you trying to do with a wok that your stainless doesn't do?

dayo, Tuesday, 5 April 2011 02:48 (nine years ago) link

when I had a wok I don't think I ever got it seasoned correctly. stuff would stick invariably. I tried to season it with a piece of solid pig fat that I rubbed over it on high heat but it just made a bad smell. irc somebody posted a scientific way of seasoning wok that used... olive oil? or something. chinese people will probably tell you to use lard to season it.

dayo, Tuesday, 5 April 2011 02:53 (nine years ago) link

i just make a mess when i stir fry with the stainless but i would probably throw things out of the wok too. most times i use a big stock pot to stir fry so i don't dump things out of it but it doesn't cook meat very nicely even thought the surface is like the stainless frying pan. the bottom is not so heavy.

Secrets will not Block Justice (harbl), Tuesday, 5 April 2011 11:09 (nine years ago) link

the real answer is i already have too much kitchen things and should not get one because there is clutter

Secrets will not Block Justice (harbl), Tuesday, 5 April 2011 11:09 (nine years ago) link

hah hah I think a wok is pretty good at keeping things 'in the pot' - you can usually 'rest' things closer to the edge. but the real secret is to do what grace does the video which is to cook each component individually and then combine at the end for a nice finish, that's what my parents always do.

if you are willing to buy wholeheartedly into the wok philosophy you could probably replace several pots and pans w/ it. in that case I would do some research and see what people consider to be a good wok.

dayo, Tuesday, 5 April 2011 11:14 (nine years ago) link

one month passes...

Oh god I'm having stir-fried... celery. That's it. Well, there's rice too. I'm broke.

fields of salmon, Tuesday, 17 May 2011 04:32 (nine years ago) link

two months pass...

Let's say I've been to the pub. And on my way back I do a bad thing and buy one of those packs of pre-chopped vegetables for stir frying. And I want to knock up something in 5 minutes. What other things should I be accumulating on my kitchen counter, and how should I be using them?

iow school me quick easy stir fry

ledge, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:20 (nine years ago) link

Fry the veg with chilli olive oil & five spice, throw in a bowl with some crushed garlic and sliced spring onions, squeeze over lime juice and some runny honey. Post-pub stir-fry in 10 minutes.

nate woolls, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:24 (nine years ago) link

oil, cooking wine, bottle of heavily flavored chinese sauce (hoisin or XO or something like that)

you're good to go!

我爱你 G. Weingarten (dayo), Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:24 (nine years ago) link

I forgot to add soy sauce to my "recipe". Pour some on along with the lime juice & honey.

nate woolls, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:25 (nine years ago) link

generic stirfry:

simmer quantities of garlic & chili to taste; add and cook vegetables + any protein; deglaze with quick dash rice vinegar; add 2tbsp rice wine, 2tbsp dark soy; bring to quick boil, thicken with cornstarch

oh, xposts

thomp, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:25 (nine years ago) link

Excellent will take all yr tips on board.

ledge, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:31 (nine years ago) link

wait where's the frying xp

我爱你 G. Weingarten (dayo), Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:31 (nine years ago) link

throw in some slices of ginger at the beginning. also you need hot oil. I usually heat the pan up real good before adding oil. don't use EVOO!

我爱你 G. Weingarten (dayo), Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:32 (nine years ago) link

ha yeah for 'simmer' read 'saute', i need coffee

i would say use groundnut oil or similar high smoke point oil. maybe a dash of sesame oil if you like the taste of sesame oil.

thomp, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:35 (nine years ago) link

Yes, sesame oil is a nice touch.

nate woolls, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:38 (nine years ago) link

isn't it. another four or five minutes and we will probably have exhausted all that i know about cooking

thomp, Wednesday, 3 August 2011 13:41 (nine years ago) link

my super lazy postpub thing would be: don't worry about aromatics, just put your vegetables and whatever in oil (say, canola with a lil' sesame) at high temp, stir it around. towards the very end throw in something like this or some other sauce recommended upthread. then add some good soy sauce. that's it. the chili garlic paste + sesame oil + good ol' soy sauce is enough to make it good. i promise.

lazy "recipe" if you have more time: mince or grate some GINGER! maybe mince or press some fresh GARLIC! maybe even add some ONIONS (red are the best for this situation imo) or SCALLLIONS aka GREEN ONIONS. now, most ppl will recommend heating the aromatics on high heat very quickly while stirring and then add the other stuff...however, a common problem is that ppl end up burning the garlic, ginger, etc. my special technique involves heating up the oil at an extremely low temp, like just about as low as the burners will go w/o flickering out and filling up your home w/DEADLY GAS FUMES. place a little bit of ginger or garlic in the pan. when it finally starts sizzling a little, throw the rest in, stir it around for a few minutes on that very low temp. then when stuff seems to be getting translucent and you can imagine that it has delightfully flavored the oil, throw in the stuff you're going to cook, densest things first, and jack the heat way the h-e-double hockey stick up, and stir, baby, stir (via Sarah Palin!). then at the very end add yr sauce/paste whatever. and maybe some sesame seeds if you're feeling FANCY! then eat, rinse, and repeat. the end.

dell (del), Wednesday, 3 August 2011 15:07 (nine years ago) link

*btw, if you use green onions, they don't go in until towards the very end.

dell (del), Wednesday, 3 August 2011 15:12 (nine years ago) link

yeah, burning the garlic is a stir-frying tragedy

time to put it in hi geir (WmC), Wednesday, 3 August 2011 15:23 (nine years ago) link

made nate's honey 'recipe', was excellent. raw spring onions added a good sharp tang, although will use a few less or fry half of them next time. was cautious with the sauce elements but after a few mouthfuls went back and added more - in total, half a lime, two generous teaspoons of honey, a few goodly shakes of the soy sauce bottle.

ledge, Sunday, 14 August 2011 22:47 (nine years ago) link

I wish I could take the credit but it's basically a Jamie Oliver recipe out of his (imo) essential 30 Minute Meals book & TV show. He does it with stir-fried rib-eye steak dressed with chilli and lime, and it's absolutely stunning.

nate woolls, Monday, 15 August 2011 06:26 (nine years ago) link

Man now this is making me want to go buy a bunch of gai larn after work and make a stir fry of greens in mirin and soy over noodles for dinner.

Rameses Street (Trayce), Monday, 15 August 2011 06:37 (nine years ago) link

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