Monday, August 20, 2012

Black bean sauce stir-fry

Chinese, along with Italian, is one of the cuisines I make the most often - it's quick, easy, and you can pretty much clean out your fridge as well. Here I've used a couple of green vegetables and pork, but you can go vegetarian, replace the vegetables with other green vegetables or use some other kind of meat - or even squid would be nice. 

Here's what you need:

Broccoli - a bit more than a pound (500g)
Snow peas - half a pound (220g)
Pork chops - half a pound (220g) (you can use tenderloins, pork chops, anything you like)
Ginger - 1 tablespoon, diced
Garlic - 1 tablespoon, diced
Sesame seed oil - 1 tablespoon
Soy sauce - 1 tablespoon
Black bean sauce - 1 tablespoon (the one I have is "black bean garlic sauce" but it's not a huge difference)
Shaoxing wine - half a cup (this is a common cooking wine - if you don't have it, you can use the same amount of dry white wine. But if there's a Chinese grocery store near you, go find it - it makes a difference! And it's also cheap - the bottle here cost me only 2 or 3 dollars at Chinatown.)
optional: a tablespoon of hot sauce if you like it spicy!

Chop off the hard ends of the snow peas.

Cut the broccoli into narrow florets.

Finely mince the garlic (not shown) and ginger. It's safe to say that almost any Chinese stir fry starts with minced garlic and ginger simmering in oil. In fact, I keep ziplock bags of the stuff in a freezer and break off bits to use whenever I need. Handy if you have a food processor to do all the chopping at once!

Cut the meat into narrow strips. I used pork chops (trimming the fat away first) but you can use anything - beef is recommended, squid wouldn't be a bad idea either. 

Put the sesame seed oil, garlic and ginger in a frying pan (if you have a gas stove (I do not) use a wok!) and wait until it sizzles.

Add the meat and stir fry over high heat.

When the meat starts turning white, dump in the broccoli - or the hardest vegetables if you are using some other kind.

Don't be like me and realize belatedly that your frying pan is a bit too small. Struggle to toss everything and mix without splattering the stove top with vegetables.

Pour in the wine - Shaoxing if you have it; it really deepens the flavours - and give it a good toss/mix.

Add in the snow peas (or any other softer smaller vegetable you may be using) and continue stir frying on high heat. If you feel things are getting a bit too dry/sticking to the pan, you can add some more wine, or a few spoons of water. Yes, it's cheating. Probably the right thing to do is add another dollop of oil - but I try to go light on the oil at home. 

Add the soy sauce and give it another good stirring up. 

Add a tablespoon of the black bean sauce. It's pretty potent stuff, so a tablespoon should be enough. 

Give it another thorough tossing, and add a tablespoon of hot sauce if you like. I just added in some hot sauce that came with a Vietnamese takeout. 

Serve immediately with white rice. Feeds three appetites like mine, or four people if they eat like little birds.  Leftovers are pretty good the next day, hot or cold!


Anonymous said...

Very nutritious and easy to cook food! I love how you mixed the snow peas to my favorite broccoli. I will have to show this recipe to my mother. Thank you for sharing!

Stir Fry Recipe Sauce

February 13, 2013 at 2:04 AM

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