The best recipe for stir fry A recipe for stir fry is as simple as a walk in the park. It is actually a modern day design for weeknight dinners or suppers. It is fast, it combines protein and vegetables in a single dish, it is relatively healthy and it requires no other pair except steamed rice. Great if some may bring in beer or pale ale. But many homes are being too ambitious in their stir frying. Stir fries can only accommodate a few different kinds of meat and vegetables, but that does not mean one should dump in the entire contents of their refrigerator in their skillets or woks. In fact, the best stir fries are restrained enough to combine only two ingredients, a protein and a vegetable with the triple essential aromatic seasonings with a flavorful sauce. There are only three fundamental rules in stir frying; first is to cook your protein and vegetables separately, and combine them only after both are fully cooked. Protein or tofu should be stirred occasionally to maintain undisturbed contact on the hot pan to acquire a nice seared brown exterior. Meanwhile, vegetables must be stirred often to cook them quickly without any part getting wilted. To stir fry protein and vegetables together will produce a dish composed of overcooked and undercooked ingredients. Second rule of the thumb, is choosing one vegetable for every stir fry. Not all vegetables cook at the same rate so it is impossible to cook two vegetables in a wok and get a tender and crisp result at the exact same time. Crowding your pan with vegetables produces more liquid, which could make the dish extra wet and veggies wilted instead of crisp. You should not combine more than one vegetable in a stir fry, but you can add fungus or mushroom, a great companion to any veggies. You must also combine your vegetable with three important aromatics, the ginger, the garlic, and the chile, without which your stir fry will taste flat. The third rule of the thumb is to remember to add liquid only after everything is more or less done cooking. A proper sauce for stir fries combines something salty like soy sauce, usually though fish sauce also works, with something a little bit sweet, like Mirin, sweet Japanese rice wine that contributes a wonderful fermented flavor. A substitute for Mirin is a teaspoon of honey or sugar mixed with two teaspoons of water. Soy sauce and Mirin are cooked for no much longer than a minute, which means you have to heat them long enough to make a glaze and coat the other ingredients. STIR FRIED TOFU, ASPARAGUS AND SHIITAKES: Makes two to three servings. Ready in twenty five to thirty minutes, plus the time to freeze and thaw the tofu. The ingredients: • One package of fourteen ounces of tofu (firm), drain and pat dry • Two tablespoons of vegetable oil or peanut oil (high smoking oil) • Salt and black pepper • One tablespoon of ginger, minced • One medium jalapeno or bird’s eye chile, minced and seeded • Two garlic cloves, minced • One pound of asparagus, peeled, and trimmed, cut into one inch segments • Three and one half ounces of fresh shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced pieces and trimmed • Two tablespoons of soy sauce • One tablespoon of Mirin • Steamed rice to serve THE PROCEDURE: • The day before you stir fry, prepare the tofu and cut it into one to two inch triangle or rectangle pieces. Then freeze the tofu overnight on your refrigerator and thaw before using. • To start stir frying, heat your wok or skillet over medium high heat on your American stove. Add one tablespoon of peanut oil or vegetable oil. When hot, add the tofu, season with salt and pepper, and cook turning every three to five minutes until browned on all sides, for about ten minutes. Transfer to a plate and reserve. • Then add the asparagus and the mushrooms, and cook stirring frequently until the vegetables are just tender for about three to five minutes. Add back the tofu to the pan and add the soy sauce and Mirin. Stir gently until the sauce thickens for about a minute. • Serve hot over steamed rice. Enjoy this recipe for stir fry at home and remember the fundamentals of stir frying.