Today it’s called being vegan, but long before there was a cool term for it, it was called Chinese food. If you’re trying to eat healthy and stay out of the kitchen, dust off that old wok (it’s probably behind the 8-track), and get ready to stir your way to health.
There are a couple of tricks to making this method of cooking a Wok in the park. First, combine vegetables that have roughly the same cooking times. If you prefer a collection of vegetables that have different cooking times, it’s all good, but you’ll have to make your food in batches.
Second, use an oil with a high burning temperature. The trick to getting crisp, cooked vegetables is to keep the oil from absorbing into the food; that means it has to be hot! Go for peanut oil, if you can, and shelve the olive oil for your salad.
Third, don’t overcrowd your vegetables. Make sure there is plenty of room to cook them, otherwise the vegetables will give off moisture and you’ll effectively steam-fry your veggies (which, as Steven would say, “is OK, but is not the exercise we’re doing today”).
Heat your wok until it just begins to smoke, then slowly drizzle the peanut oil down the side until you have a few tablespoons in the bottom. Add your vegetables (whatever you like), and stir them rapidly in the hot oil for a few minutes. Reduce the heat, and add the liquids (soy sauce, hoison, whateve…). You’re on your way.
Prior to becoming a legal goddess, Tsan worked in the food industry, both as chef (in Cambridge and New Hampshire) and as an event planner (in Vail). She also ran the Culinary, Hospitality and Restaurant Management Certificate Program at UCLA Extension.