Wok This Way!

Wok This Way!

Yeah, I know, cheesy title! I really did use my wok, though. :) This is an easy recipe, because it uses basic ingredients, things I usually have on hand, other than a few extra veggies. Its also very quick cooking. Start your rice when you start chopping veggies. By the time you’re finished stir-frying, the rice is cooked and ready to go. You’re eating in 20 minutes!

I have to tell you… I’m uber excited about my weekend because its the South Beach Wine and Food Festival… and yours truly is going to the Grand Tasting!!!! The Forge, Touch, and Blue Door in the Delano (where my hubby proposed) are among some of the amazing South Florida restaurants who will be offering samples of their wares. There will also be many chefs including Masaharu Morimoto, (AKA The Iron Chef) Bobby Flay and Tyler Florence from the Food Network that will be there for seminars and book signings. I am just beside myself with excitement! Thank goodness I have my own personal paparazzi with me (isn’t it great to marry a photographer?) so I’ll have photos to post next week.

I would love to go to all the events, especially the Interactive Cooking Lunch with Ming Tsai (big sigh…) but everything sold out quickly. I have been a huge fan of his for many years. When I was in Culinary School, we had to write about who we looked up to in the industry. I chose him because at the time, he had a show called East meets West. What a coincidence, that’s what I am… Japanese and American… get it? Anyway, in writing this story, I decided to send Ming an email and ask a few questions. Honestly, I never expected to hear back from him. One day… maybe a month after I had written him the email, I came home to a message on my voice mail. It was MING TSAI! Not his assistant, not the assistant to his assistant, but the real deal. He left me a very long message thanking me for the email and answering my questions. Embarrassing confession: I kept that voice mail for at least 2 years, and played it back often. I’m such a dork, I know.

Szechuan Shrimp Stir Fry

3/4 pound raw shrimp
1/4 c reduced sodium soy sauce
1/4 – 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp dark sesame oil
1 tsp peanut oil
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 c snow peas
1 red or yellow pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 c carrots, thinly sliced
1 tsp ginger, minced
1 tsp garlic, minced
1/4 c chicken stock (or water)
1 tbsp hoisin sauce
1 tsp cornstarch
2 tbsp green onions, thinly sliced
1 tsp cilantro, chopped (optional)

1. Combine shrimp, soy sauce and red pepper flakes in a medium bowl and stir to coat. Heat oil in a wok over medium high heat. Add onion, snow peas, carrots and bell pepper and stir fry for about 3-4 minutes.

2 . Push the veggies up the side of the wok to clear the bottom and add the ginger and garlic. Stir around for about one minute, and then stir in with the rest of the veggies. Again, push the veggies up the sides of the wok and add the shrimp, reserving the soy sauce marinade. Stir fry for about 2 minutes to cook shrimp through.

3. Add the chicken stock, hoisin and cornstarch to the reserved marinade and stir well to combine and dissolve the cornstarch. Add the liquid to the wok and stir fry again until the sauce is thick and bubbling. If it looks too thick, add another tablespoon or so of water or chicken stock.

4. Serve over steamed rice and garnish with green onions and cilantro.