Stir-Fry Adds Savory Addition to Dinner Rotation
With my busy schedule, I confess to cooking the same 7 dinners nearly every week. Simple family-pleasers requiring little planning, like Friday night pizza. Seeking a little variety, I recently added stir-frying to the rotation and it’s become one of my favorites.
That’s because it’s quick and versatile, using ingredients on hand. I begin planning my recipe by checking which fresh vegetables need to be eaten first, and also keep a stir-fry veggie blend in the freezer as a back-up. A variety of flavorings with a long shelf life, like soy sauce, teriyaki, hoisin, rice vinegar, and honey are kept in the pantry or fridge. I use a wok to cook in, but a large skillet works as well.
Stir-frying is a Chinese cooking technique that was brought to the U.S. by immigrants in the early 1800s. It wasn’t until the 70’s until it became a popular way to cook at home, as health-conscious people realized the technique was simple and tasty.
To get you started, this recipe has a delicious sauce with a curry flair. The peanut butter thickens it and adds so much flavor.
- ½ cup creamy peanut butter
- ¼ cup water
- 3 tablespoons honey or maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
- 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 2 cloves garlic minced
Whisk sauce ingredients together in a medium bowl and set aside.
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts or thighs cut into ½ inch pieces
- 6 cups vegetables of choice, ½” chopped
- ½ cup dry-roasted peanuts, roughly chopped
- ½ cup fresh cilantro, chopped
- Prepared rice for serving, preferably brown
- In a large wok or deep, large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the onion and cook until fragrant and beginning to soften.
- Add the chicken and sauté, stirring occasionally, until fully cooked through and the juices run clear, about 4 minutes. Remove the chicken and onion from the skillet and set aside.
- Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil, then the vegetables. Start with the veggies that take the longest to cook. Sauté until crisp-tender, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Return the chicken and onion to the skillet. Add the reserved peanut sauce. Toss to coat evenly, and cook until heated through, about 2 minutes.
- Stir in the peanuts and cilantro. Serve hot over rice, topped with additional chopped peanuts and cilantro as desired.