Monday, March 19, 2012

Stir Fry Chicken and Vegetables

Spike and I went to see Stomp this past Saturday evening. Super cool, by the way. You should go see them if you get the chance. We had planned to eat ahead of time and since we both like to cook I suggested we whip something up before the show. I wanted something simple and somewhat healthy so I suggested Stir Fry. He was amenable so the menu was set.

The evening meal starred:
1 Chicken breast (cubed)
Bell peppers (red, yellow, orange)
Snow peas
Baby Portobello mushrooms
Stir Fry sauce
Basmati rice (Follow the directions on the bag. This is definitely NOT Minute Rice.)

The reason the carrots and mushrooms aren't included in the picture is because Spike decided to add those after it was taken.

I apologize for not including measurements but we were making this up as we went along and knew by looking if it was going to be enough for both of us. We ended up with enough for one bowl each and no leftovers. Good guess, huh?

We cooked everything in a covered wok. Unfortunately, it was not non-stick so there was some burning. Very frustrating but we carried on. I heated approximately 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil and then added the chicken. (There are no pictures of said poultry because none of them turned out right.) This cooked until it was no longer pink in the middle and was just starting to brown on the outside. Oh! I forgot to mention the tarragon. Spike had accidentally pulled his tarragon plant along with some weeds when he was working in his garden earlier in the day so he decided to add it to the mix instead of throwing it all away. I don’t think I’ve ever taken the time to stop and smell the tarragon. Omigosh! It’s amazing! I want to cook everything with tarragon now. Why have I never paid attention to this herb before? I must grow my own this year. Again, add as much as you’d like. And don’t forget that you have to finish the meal so don’t just stand there savoring the aroma. Trust me on this.

When the chicken was finished we moved it to a bowl and stuck it in the nukerowave to keep it warm. Next we added a little more oil and once it heated we threw in the carrots and broccoli. You’ll want to cook these before your other veggies because they’ll still taste raw by the time the others are finished. They weren’t cooking as quickly as we wanted so Spike had me add some water to steam them. I think I cooked/steamed them for about 10 minutes total. This part is a matter of taste. I don’t like mushy broccoli so after I burned my tongue trying to taste test a piece I was happy that it was still crispy but no longer raw. Spike had to test the carrots because I’ve decided I’m allergic. Or I don’t like them. Whatever.

Once those were the almost desired consistency we added the other veggies. Well, everything except the mushrooms. Spike waited until after all the other veggies were cooked and then heated the ‘shrooms all by their lonesome. Why? I’m allergic to those too. Or I can’t stand the texture. This is exactly why I could never be a chef. When the peppers and snow peas are as cooked as you want them the broccoli and carrots should be just right.

We brought the chicken back to the party and poured in a little Stir Fry sauce. I think I used about 2 tablespoons. Once everything was thoroughly coated it all went in to a bowl and then I added the rice.

This was when Spike cooked the mushrooms.

You’ll note that my bowl contains the evil carrots. No problem. While Spike was busy cooking the fungi I was busy separating out the sinister orange veggies. Then, as soon as Spike put his bowl on the table I ever-so-kindly transferred them over. I know. I’m cool like that. And just so you know, I do try things that I don’t like every few years just in case my tastes have changed. Apparently I’m just never going to like carrots. I do, however, know that I like the taste of mushrooms. If they’re chopped up teensy tinesy or added to gravies or what-not I will definitely eat them. I say that to let you know that you should never decide that you will never like something. Wait. Does that count as a double negative? You get what I mean, though, right? Right? Anyway, this is super easy to cook. Just don’t do it only an hour before you need to leave for a show or something else equally important. We were cutting it close.

I’m betting it wouldn’t take normal people that long to cook Stir Fry but Spike and I have discovered that we can’t cook anything in under an hour. It’s just not possible.

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