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Quick Tips: Cutting Strips for Stir-Fries

Quick Tips: Cutting Strips for Stir-Fries

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How to slice your ingredients for the best results.

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Keto Beef Stir Fry

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Before jumping to the recipe, don't miss the HELPFUL RECIPE TIPS in the post! I hope you'll find them useful and will love this fantastic recipe.

How to Slice Chicken Breast for Stir-Fries

Hold the chicken breast with your non-knife hand, curling your fingertips under your knuckles (so you don't slice them off!), and slice the chicken with long, even strokes into slices about 1/4-inch thick.

Stir-Fry Recipe: Create Your Own

A stir-fry has all the features of an ideal weeknight meal–it’s quick, nutritious, and delicious. But stir-frying on a home stove isn’t the same as stir-frying over the super-high temperatures that a Chinese chef uses. Too often, a home-cooked stir-fry falls prey to unevenly cooked vegetables, dry meat, scorched garlic, or a watery sauce. My method reorganizes the classic stir-frying method so that you’re able to stay in control throughout the process and get perfect results every time. The basic method is simple enough that you can get creative with your favorite ingredients.

A skillet beats a wok on a home range. The traditional method of stir-frying involves cooking in a wok over very high heat–with more oil than you’d believe. Home stovetops, however, just don’t have the firepower to heat a wok adequately and evenly. Your best bet is a heavy 12-inch skillet. It conducts heat well, and the pan’s shallow sides allow extra moisture to evaporate, keeping the vegetables crisp and the meat tender. And you’ll use less oil, too.

Prep your ingredients

Because stir-frying happens at lightning speed, you want to have all elements fully prepped. Besides prepping your sauce and aromatics here, you’ll also want to cut up all the meat and vegetables as directed (see below).

In a small bowl, combine 2 Tbs. very thinly sliced scallions (white and light green parts), 2 tsp. minced fresh ginger, and 2 tsp. minced garlic.

Make your chosen sauce (see options below) according to the recipes at the bottom of this page.

Choose one sauce (recipes at bottom of the page)

Cook the meat or shrimp

To keep things sizzling, don’t overcrowd the pan. The trick is to stir-fry in batches: first the meat or shrimp and then the vegetables and the aromatics.

Season 1 lb. of meat or shrimp (see options below) with 1/4 tsp. kosher salt and a dash of ground white pepper. Heat a 12-inch skillet or a stir-fry pan over high heat for 2 minutes. Add 1 Tbs. vegetable oil, swirl to coat the pan evenly, and heat until the oil just barely begins to smoke, about 30 seconds-only a light haze is necessary.

Add the meat to the pan. Let it sear for about 15 seconds and then begin to stir occasionally (every 10 seconds or so) until its raw appearance is gone but the center is slightly undercooked, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.

Choose one meat or seafood

Cook the vegetables and aromatics

Different vegetables cook at different rates, so you’ll often see recipes that call for cooking each vegetable separately. Since I like to use a lot of different vegetables in my stir-fries, I find this tedious. It defeats the whole quick-cooking concept. So I’ve designed my stir-fry method so that each vegetable is cut to a specific size according to its density (i.e., the denser the vegetable, the smaller the cut). This way, the vegetables can cook at the same rate in one easy batch. Waiting to add the aromatic trio-garlic, ginger, and scallion-until after the vegetables have cooked for a minute is a trick to prevent scorching. With plenty of vegetables in the pan to temper the heat, the flavors of the garlic, ginger, and scallion can bloom without the chance of burning.

Add another 1 Tbs. vegetable oil to the pan and swirl to coat evenly. Add 1 lb. your chosen vegetables (see options below) and 1 Tbs. water and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.

Add the scallion-ginger-garlic mixture to the pan and cook, stirring constantly, until the vegetables are crisp-tender, 1 to 4 minutes. If the bottom of the pan looks like it’s starting to burn, add more water, 1 Tbs. at a time.

Choose 2 to 5 vegetables, for 1 lb. total (about 4 cups)

Bok choy, white ribs cut on the bias into 1-inch pieces leaves cut into 2-inch pieces. Wash and drain after cutting

Add the sauce and finish the stir-fry

Stir the meat or shrimp back into the pan and cook for another 30 seconds to reheat and to blend the flavors.

Whisk the sauce to recombine it. Pour the sauce into the stir-fry, stirring well to coat evenly, and cook until it thickens, 15 to 20 seconds. Transfer the stir-fry to a bowl and serve immediately with rice.

Tips for the perfect stir-fry

A skillet beats a wok for home stoves. The traditional method of stir-frying involves cooking in a wok over very high heat—with more oil than you’d believe. Most home stovetops, however, just don’t have the firepower to heat a wok adequately and evenly. Your best bet is a heavy 12-inch skillet. It conducts heat well, and the pan’s shallow sides allow extra moisture to evaporate, keeping the vegetables crisp and the meat tender. And you’ll use less oil, too.

To keep things sizzling, don’t overcrowd the pan. The trick is to stir-fry in batches—first the meat, chicken, or seafood and then the vegetables and the aromatics.

Just a bit of water prevents burning. Since I use much less oil than in a traditional stir-fry, sometimes my pan dries out and the vegetables begin to burn before they’re crisp-tender. If I see this happening, I add water, about a tablespoon at a time, to the pan to keep the process going without adding more oil.

Cantonese Orange Sauce Recipe

1-1/2 tsp. cornstarch
2 tsp. soy sauce
1/4 cup homemade or low-salt canned chicken broth
2 Tbs. thawed frozen orange juice concentrate
2 Tbs. dry sherry
1-1/2 tsp. oyster sauce 1 tsp. granulated sugar
1 tsp. minced fresh ginger

In a measuring cup, combine the cornstarch with the soy sauce, whisking to blend. Then whisk in the remaining ingredients.

Sesame-Soy Sauce Recipe

2 tsp. sesame seeds, toasted
1-1/2 tsp. cornstarch
2 tsp. rice vinegar
1/4 cup homemade or low-salt canned chicken broth
2 Tbs. soy sauce
2 tsp. granulated sugar
1 Tbs. sliced scallions (white and green parts)
2 tsp. toasted sesame oil
1/2 tsp. minced garlic

Toast the sesame seeds in a small, dry skillet over medium heat, tossing until golden and fragrant. Immediately transfer to a small bowl to stop the cooking. In a measuring cup, combine the cornstarch with the rice vinegar, whisking to blend. Then whisk in the sesame seeds and the remaining ingredients.

Spicy Sichuan Sauce Recipe

1-1/2 tsp. cornstarch
1-1/2 tsp. soy sauce
1/4 cup homemade or low-salt canned chicken broth
2 Tbs. dry sherry
1 Tbs. Asian chile paste
1 Tbs. sliced scallions (white and green parts)
1 Tbs. honey
1 Tbs. hoisin sauce
1/2 tsp. minced fresh ginger
1/2 tsp. minced garlic

In a measuring cup, combine the cornstarch with the soy sauce, whisking to blend. Then whisk in the remaining ingredients.

Chinese Black Bean Sauce Recipe

1-1/2 tsp. cornstarch
1-1/2 tsp. dry sherry
1/2 cup homemade or low-salt chicken broth
1-1/2 Tbs. Chinese black bean and garlic sauce
1 Tbs. granulated sugar
1 tsp. Asian chile paste
1/2 tsp. minced fresh ginger

In a measuring cup, combine the cornstarch with the sherry, whisking to blend. Then whisk in the remaining ingredients.

  1. COMBINE ½ cup marinade (such as teriyaki sauce) PLUS 2 tbsp corn-starch in a sealable freezer bag.
  2. ADD 1 lb (500g) beef cubes/strips and refrigerate 15 to 30 minutes.
  3. For cubes, discard marinade, pat meat dry and thread onto skewers. Grill or broil 4 to 5 minutes per side or until browned, but pink inside. For strips, reserve marinade cook strips over medium-high heat in hot lightly oiled non-stick skillet for about 2 minutes, turning once, until browned but pink inside. Remove from skillet add stir-fry vegetables and cook for 5 minutes. Add reserved marinade and beef heat until sauce bubbles and thickens.
  1. SPREAD thin layer of your favourite filling/seasonings (such as seasoned bread crumbs and pan-fried mushrooms) over each piece of beef.
  2. ROLL each piece from short end secure with butcher’s twine, picks or skewers.
  3. BROIL, turning several times, for 7 to 8 minutes until browned all over and digital rapid-read thermometer inserted into centre of each rouladen reads at least 160°F (71°C). Serve whole or cut each piece into ¼ -inch thick slices.

How to Use Green Onions

There are plenty of green onion recipes that highlight this veggie, and there are many more where it plays a supporting role. Here are a few ways to incorporate your chopped or cut green onions into your favorite recipes:

  • Use thinly sliced raw green onions as a finishing touch to foods including soups, stews, grilled meats, dips, deviled eggs, potato salad, and omelets. They add extra color, freshness, and flavor.
  • Add 1-inch slices of green onions to stir-fried vegetable and meat dishes. The green onions will cook in 1 to 2 minutes (more quickly than meats and most other vegetables) so add them toward the end of cooking time.
  • Toss them raw into green salads to add mild onion appeal.
  • Add thinly sliced green onions to scrambled eggs just before cooking the eggs.
  • Tuck chopped green onions into fillings for egg salad and tuna salad sandwiches.
  • Serve longer green onion slices alongside carrots and celery on a raw vegetable tray. For each onion, trim the root ends, then slice off enough of the dark green stems to leave a 3- to 4-inch piece.
  • Use finely minced green onions as a substitute for snipped fresh chives.

How to Cook Beef Strips

We eat a lot of chicken but sometimes it’s nice to change things up with other proteins like beef. A good beef roast is always delicious but more often than not we need quick options to just get dinner on the table in a hurry. Beef strips are a great way to do that. You can either buy them pre-cut or cut them yourself. But how do you know what kind of meat to buy so they don’t turn out tough?

What are Beef Strips?

Beef strips are taken from a cut of beef that is tender when cooked quickly, like on the grill. They’re sometimes called Fajita Strips or Stir Fry Beef. Why? Because they’re used to make fajitas and stir fries. They’re good for so much more than that though. Like beef stroganoff.

How to Buy Beef Strips

They are often sold already cut into strips at the grocery store. You can get them like that for convenience sake, or you can cut your own. Unfortunately, if you buy them already cut, there is often no information provided about the cut of beef that is used. But that’s okay. Look at the packet and choose one where some of the strips have a bit of marbling but no gristle. That’ll be your best bet.

Which Cut of Beef to Use for Beef Strips

If you’re going to cut your own beef strips, you’ll want to buy a cut of beef that is good for grilling. That can be a rib eye or strip loin steak or even filet mignon, but all of those are a bit pricey for this. I typically go with flank or skirt steak. Other cuts that are good for cutting into strips and then cooking quickly are sirloin, tri-tip, tenderloin, shoulder center (Ranch Steak), shoulder top blade (Flat Iron), and shoulder petite tender. Also be on the lookout for chuck eye steaks. This is a slightly rarer cut of steak that I’ve been seeing more often at my own grocery store. It’s very juicy and tender. Perfect for grilling, and perfect for cutting into beef strips. And it tends to be quite a bit cheaper than rib eyes and strip loins so it’s a win-win for sure!

If you’re thinking of cutting your own beef strips, just go in and see if any of the above-listed cuts of beef are on sale. That might help you choose one.

How to Cut Beef Strips

If the steak is thin, 1/2-inch or less, then simply use a sharp knife to cut it into 1/4 to 1/2″ strips.

If the steak is thicker, cut it into 1/4 to 1/2″ strips. It will now be the correct width but will be too thick, or too high. So cut each strip such that you end up with the width/height also being 1/4 to 1/2″.

How to Cook Beef Strips

Fajitas or stir fries

If using them in fajitas or stir fries, start by seasoning them with salt and pepper. Then add other seasonings, if desired. For fajitas, using some chili powder, cumin, and a touch of cayenne is a good bet. For stir fries, try a touch of Chinese five powder spice or the tiniest bit of ground ginger.

Then heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. You can use a wok if making a stir fry. Add a tablespoon or two of vegetable oil or other cooking oil with a high smoking point. Grape seed oil is also great for this. When the oil is really hot, add your beef strips in a single layer. Don’t crowd the pan. Now don’t touch those beef strips for at least 2-3 minutes. You want them to get a good sear on the first side.

Once that first side is seared well, flip the strips over. Now cook, stirring often, until they reach your desired done-ness. They really don’t take long to cook so you might only need 1 or 2 more minutes after you start stirring them.

If the beef strips are for fajitas, you can serve them straight from the skillet. If you’re making a stir fry, remove the beef strips from the skillet. Wipe out the skillet. Then proceed with cooking your vegetables. Return the beef to the skillet at the end to heat through and so that it gets covered in a bit of whatever stir fry sauce you have on the veggies.

Soups, stews, and stroganoff

If you’re using the beef strips for a soup or stew or for something like beef stroganoff, the process isn’t that different. The only thing that’s different is that you can toss the beef in some flour before cooking it. This gives the beef a bit more of a crust and also that bit of flour can add a touch of thickness to whatever liquid you later add.

So what you’ll do is, in a large bowl, mix together 1/4 cup of all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1 teaspoon of black pepper. You can also add 1 teaspoon of garlic powder, if you’d like.

Add 1 pound of beef strips and toss to coat. Transfer beef to a plate, shaking off excess flour. Discard the excess flour.

Then proceed by heating a large skillet, adding oil, and cooking the beef as instructed.

At this point you can also turn this into a quick beef and gravy dish by slowly adding 2 cups of beef broth while stirring constantly then simmering until slightly thickened.

Fusion Chicken and Asparagus

Why not try a dish like this fusion chicken and asparagus recipe? It incorporates Chinese and Thai ingredients and is excellent with potstickers and Thai rice.

The sauce used in this recipe combines Thai chili paste, fish sauce, black bean sauce, and oyster sauce with chicken stock for balance. The chicken is deep fried and asparagus, garlic, ginger, and Serrano peppers are stir-fried with the sauce.

So, what are a few of our favorite ways to use this humble tool?

•Snip off the pointy top ends of artichoke leaves, as pictured above.

•Chop up whole canned tomatoes, of course!

•Cut up bacon strips with ease – no need to fuss around with chopping lardons on the cutting board. You can even cut the raw bacon straight into the pan this way!

•Trim up a pie crust in a snap – it’s especially handy for snipping off overhanging edges on a pie tin.

•Slice up charcuterie like salame and prosciutto without any fuss

•Snip herbs like thyme, chives and basil easily – and green onions!

•When spatchcocking a chicken, sharp kitchen shears are the best for the job.

•No pizza cutter? No problem – use the scissors. (works for quesadillas, too!)

•Slice chicken breast or steak up into strips or dices with ease for stir fries and kebabs.

•Chop up leafy greans like kale and chard in a jiffy.

•Make quick work out of peeling shrimp – use the scissors to cut the shell along the top of the shrimp.

Stir in the sauce and serve this chicken stir fry

The final step is adding the chicken stir fry sauce. If you've prepared the sauce ahead of time, take it out of the fridge while you're prepping the vegetables. Before pouring it into the pan, give the mason jar a good shake because the cornstarch may have settled to the bottom. Even if you've just made it, shake up the sauce to be sure the cornstarch is thoroughly combined with the other ingredients. Now, add one cup of the sauce to the pan, and set the heat to medium. As the sauce comes to a boil, it will begin to thicken.

Keep stirring the chicken and vegetables to coat them, and if you want more sauce, then by all means, add more! Olivieri likes to serve her stir fry over rice, egg noodles, or even thin spaghetti. The final touch is garnishing each plate with a sprinkle of the green parts of the sliced scallions you reserved earlier. This stir fry recipe is so quick and easy for any night of the week, so why not try it tonight?

Watch the video: τηγανιτές πατάτες με άλλα κόλπα-έχετε δοκιμάσει έτσι?δεν απορροφούν λάδι French fries CuzinaGias (June 2022).


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