Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Stir fry 101

Everyone goes through countless interviews, first dates, and recently for me “first week of schools”. And yet given all these opportunities at repetition, I wonder if we really do learn from our experiences and improve upon them the second time around.

I remember in my first year of university three years ago, I went to class equipped with highlighters, notebooks (sorted by colour), pens, pencils, and the class course pack. This past week, I went to my first class with a few pages of a notebook left over from the previous year.

During class in my first year of university, I remember writing down the notes from most of the class slides, including the fact that Canola oil is actually rapeseed oil but its name was changed for marketing reasons. First Year Me thought this could be testable. On the other hand, Forth Year Me left my first class with a single sheet of paper jotted on it, “ANAT 381: Midterm is 20% of grade”.

Going into first year, I had some basic knowledge of history, literature, calculus, biology, chemistry, and physics. Now three years later, if pressed, I can probably identify where the closest washroom is to most of my classes.

So while there might not be the tried and true recipe for life success, a recipe for stir fry is a little easier to come by. Stir frys are my go-to for a quick healthy meal and can be adapted to almost whatever vegetables are in the fridge.

Stir fry 101

1. First you start with the aromatics. In a heated pan with a thin layer of oil, place one or two of:
Sliced onion, minced garlic, pepper flakes, or sliced ginger

2. Then brown up your protein. Pick one of:
Chicken/beef strips, tofu, chickpeas, shrimp

3. Once your protein is almost cooked, you can get in some veggies. Some good combinations are:
Broccoli, mushrooms, and carrots
Zucchini, eggplant, and spinach (put in last minute) 

4. Simmer everything with some seasonings: 
For the seasoning, use equal parts soy sauce and ketchup with a little curry powder and water. (Also optional hot sauce.) Serve with rice, noodles, or couscous.

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