Sunday, July 17, 2011

Yummy Stir Fry

About a year and a half to two years ago, my husband kept bugging me to make stir fry. However, I was pregnant and in no mood for stir fry because stir fry is boring.

Then my baby was born and my dad and step-mom came to visit. One evening, they made stir fry for me and my husband and it was delicious. Ever since, this general stir fry recipe has been a regular dish in our house.

Keep in mind that stir fry is very versatile and if any of these vegetables sound unappealing, just leave them out.

You will need the following ingredients for this recipe:

-2 chicken breasts
-3Tbsp vegetable oil
-2 cloves garlic
-2 medium carrots
-1 red or orange bell pepper
-2 small heads of broccoli (or 1 large)
-Top 1/4 of a leek
-2 small onions
-1 zucchini
-About 1 half a 300mL bottle of spicy Szechuan sauce or stir fry sauce of your preference
-3/4cup uncooked rice

Trim fat from chicken breasts and chop them into chunks. Size doesn't really matter - it's your preference.

In 1Tbsp of the vegetable oil, stir fry the chicken in a wok until it's white on the outside, like you did with the Herbed Chicken recipe.

In the mean time, prepare the vegetables. Again, I never ever... okay, I very rarely use fresh garlic because it is a royal pain in the you-know-where. I use jarred. If you do use fresh, peel it and mince it up, preferably with a santoku knife. Peel and slice the carrots into thin disks. Seed and thinly slice the red pepper. Chop off the top of the broccoli and slice it into small florets. Cut off the top 1/4 of a leek and thinly slice it into stalks. Chop the onion. Halve the zucchini and chop. Actually this is all made easier with a santoku knife. If you don't have one, I recommend you invest.

Once your chicken is white on the outsides (it does not need to be cooked through yet), add the vegetables and the rest of the vegetable oil and mix well with the chicken.
"Asian Family": the good brand!!
Mix together the vegetables and chicken well. Once the vegetables and chicken are well-combined, add the Szechuan sauce. By the way, when you are buying your spicy Szechuan sauce, you will be much happier buying a good, expensive kind and I'll tell you why. Once, when we were short on cash but craving stir fry, we bought this other kind of Szechuan sauce. Also a name brand, yes, but it was a larger bottle for less money: a no-brainer!... or so we thought! Alas, when we attempted a stir fry with this alternate brand, all it did was turn our chicken pink and make our vegetables bitter. Not a good experience.

So, once you add your good brand of Szechuan (or other stir fry) sauce, mix up the vegetables again and let them cook. In the mean time, get your rice cooking. Remember: 1.5 cups of water for 3/4 cups of uncooked rice. Once your vegetables are well cooked and looking like this:

you may add the rice and stir it up so that it looks like this:

Serve it right away so it's very hot. The carrots will be quite firm still, but I like them this way.

Makes good leftovers for babies too!


Boring version of recipe instructions:

Trim fat and cut up chicken into chunks. Cook in wok until white on all sides in 1Tbsp of vegetable oil. Prepare vegetables and add to wok along with remaining oil. Add Szechuan sauce. Stir well. Add cooked rice and mix. Serve hot. Carrots will be firm.


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