Dinner / Oven/Stove / Recipes / Vegan / Vegetables

Clean out the Fridge: Stir-fry night

Like most people, I really dislike throwing away food. But I’m still perfecting the art of buying the exact quanities I need to make the week’s meals.

So I try to work into the weekly meal plan one night when I make a meal that uses up the bits and pieces of vegetables we have left in the crisper. Stir-fry is a great one for that, since pretty much any vegetable can be thrown in.

I used to flavour the dish with oyster sauce, since Big Handsome really likes it. But then I read the label. Too much sodium, MSG and sugar.  But like I said, Big Handsome really likes it.

I have been working on concocting a homemade replacement sauce. The latest version was ok. Of course, I don’t say anything if Big Handsome wants to add a little oyster sauce on top for a bit more familiar a flavour. At least not until (a) I perfect the homemade version or (b) we run out and I “forget” to re-buy it. And thus, the weaning begins.

The sauce should be easy: we simply need something salty (tamari/coconut aminos/shoyu), something sweet (agave syrup/honey) and something thick (tapioca starch/arrowroot powder). Mix these with water, and you’ve got a stir-fry sauce. The problem is the ratios. My method thus far has been haphazard. Mix a little of this and a little of that together. Taste. Adjust. Taste. Adjust. Taste. Serve. Definitely not as easy as it should be. If you’ve got a good homemade terriyaki-esque sauce, please share it in the comment section.

As for the accompaniment, for years I always served stir-fry with rice. Now I like to change it up. Sometimes we’ll use brown basmati rice, sometimes rice or buckweat noodles, but if it’s a vegetarian stir-fry, I like to use mung bean vermicelli for the added protein. These noodles are made from ground up beans, and sometimes some rice flour.  They’re pretty much tasteless, and kinda fun to eat.

Stir-Fry with Cashews and Mung Bean Noodles

1 T olive oil
1/2 onion
4 cloves garlic, chopped or grated
1.2 inch piece of ginger, chopped or grated
vegetables cut into bite sized pieces (I used carrots, mushrooms, snow peas, cauliflower, green cabbage, bok choy, red and yellow bell peppers)
1/2 tsp. turmeric,  salt and pepper, to taste
stir-fry sauce (see above)
mung bean noodles
cashews, raw or toasted

Instructions: cook onions, garlic and ginger in olive oil until soft. Add vegetables in order of how long they take to cook. (i.e., carrots and cauliflower before peppers and bok choy). Continue to cook, stirring, until desired doneness. Season with turmeric (light flavour, but lots of health benefits), and a little salt and pepper.  Add stir-fry sauce and bring just to a boil. Serve over mung bean noodles. Top with toasted cashews. Enjoy!

To prepare mung bean noodles, simply empty the package of vermicelli into a bowl and cover with boiling water. Let sit 3-4 minutes. I like to cut the noodles with kitchen scissors before serving into bowls. Sometimes I’ll add the prepared noodles to the pan and fry them into the dish.

To toast cashews, place nuts in a frying pan and heat, stirring occasionally, until slightly brown. Watch nuts carefully; all of a sudden they’re ready and then they burn. Trust me on this one. No one likes a burnt cashew.

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7 thoughts on “Clean out the Fridge: Stir-fry night

  1. I discovered Yeast this week. I have the flakey nutritional yeast which I use to coat things like tofu or fish, but this week I found this solid, molasses like one at Lulu. It almost tastes like beef bouillon or something. I added it to the 5 bean (or so) veg chilli we had for supper tonight. It’s got lots of B12. I’m going to try it in soups as well. I suspect it’ll make for good stock. I thought it might be a good thing to try for your homemade sauce.

    • Oh, good idea. I’ve avoided all types of yeast based on the results of my intolerance test last year, but maybe nutritional yeast is different from baker’s or brewer’s yeast. Somthing to research!

  2. Of late I’ve had more success in managing my fridge, only because our lovely house helper was away and I needed to put more thought and planning into making sure I had a meal shopped for and cooked. I have to say I’ve enjoyed the more focused shopping to avoid throwing out food. Love left-overs suppers too!

  3. Pingback: Greatest Hits (& Recipe for Shades of Orange Stew) | Love & Green Juice

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