It always baffles me when people tell me they are intimidated by the stir fry. I am not sure what it means or where the term originated, but I will be looking up the etymology after I am finished with this post. To me, a stir fry is the easiest and quickest dinner you can whip up. All you need is a wok, oil, vegetables, cooked rice, and some soy sauce. But alas, grasshoppers, that is where my issue comes in. I am allergic to soy. As some of you may know, it is the quintessential ingredient to a stir fry. It is the sauce. It is what makes the rice brown. Well, I can’t do soy sauce nor any other condiment, which is particularly heartbreaking because I LOVE condiments, but that didn’t stop me from coming up with this.
I call it *pause* Naked Stir Fry. It’s naked because it’s not covered with a blanket of soy sauce that changes its color and flavor. Instead, this is a stir fry that celebrates the vegetables that are in it by not masking them with pesky, delicious soy sauce. The naked version is still very good. If you can do the soy and gluten thing, feel free to use it or Bragg’s amino acids in place of soy sauce. The decision to consume this dish in the nude is also entirely your choice. Enjoy.
*Note: It’s the dead of winter in Media. It’s snowing. I didn’t make it to the orchard to get veggies so almost all the vegetables in this dish are frozen veggies. Easy peasy, kids. Also, I used quick cooking rice from Trader Joe’s because making rice on a stove that doesn’t simmer is impossible.
1 cup frozen petite peas
1 small stalk of celery, chopped into Cs
1/2 cup of frozen broccoli florets
2 small onions, diced
2 cloves garlic, finely shopped
2 cups cooked rice
6 oz of boneless, skinless chicken thighs
4 tablespoons EVOO
Salt and garlic powder to taste
Sesame seeds for garnish (optional)
1. Cook the chicken in a nonstick pan with 2 tablespoons EVOO. It should take about 20 minutes for the chicken to cook. Cut it open to make sure it’s cooked all the way before proceeding. Cut the chicken into bite sized pieces and retain the oil in the pan for later use.
2. In a wok, heat the remaining two tablespoons of EVOO. Make sure the oil is hot before adding the onions. Note: Once you drop in the onions, don’t walk away or stop stirring. The oil is hot and your food will burn. When the oil is hot, drop in the onions and the garlic. Stir fry them for about 3 minutes.
3. Next, add the frozen vegetables. I always add them before the fresh ones because I want to give them a chance to thaw first. Salt the stir fry at this point.
4. Next, add the fresh vegetables and stir to incorporate.
5. The last step is to add the cooked rice, the chicken, and the remaining oil from the pan which was used to cook the chicken. Stir the mixture. You won’t need to cook it far beyond this point because the chicken and the rice are already fully cooked. Add salt and garlic powder to taste.
That’s it! That’s all there is to it. With the exception of the chopping and cooking the chicken, the stir fry process doesn’t take any more than 15 minutes to complete.