Stir fry always attracted me but was a complete disaster whenever I indulged to cook it since the veggies would become soggy and gooey. The dream of learning it under a professional umbrella came true at Suva. The refresher course became my answer to the Stir Fry. Freeman is a Chinese staying in Fiji, and relishes cooking the way Indians derive their share of contentment from cricket. We became friends instantly and booked our appointments with each other to learn and teach.
Stir fry is a nonpareil technique where the texture and taste of the veggies is retained by quick sauteing over high heat and steam. Something to learn and master, to taste those veggies individually yet together.
Make sure all the ingredients are cut thinly and in your favorite shapes. We used tofu, carrots, brocolli, baby corn and chinese sprouts (The full green moong allowed to sprout for 3 days in a muslin cloth and washed 3 times in a day)
The Chinese Wok and the hig-flame burner are the breath to the life of the Chinese Stir fry. Pour in 4 tbspoons of oil and chuck in 2 flakes of garlic, a small pod of ginger and 3 green chillies slit vertically. Let them fry nicely on high flame. When done, add the veggies (carrots, beans, baby corn get in first) then the cabbage.
Remember to keep stirring (the reason why it is called stir fry since you cannot leave it, you got to be with it, cradling it, it needs your presence) on high flame and when you notice any veggies getting done, just get them to the sides of the wok, where the heat is lower. Freeman kept stirring them for approximately 8-10 minutes. But the secret tip here is that when the wok became very hot, he would sprinkle 2-3 tbsps of water and allow the steam to evaporate in which the veggies were getting cooked. He did this a couple of times until the veggies quenched their thirst with half a cup of water. He was very sure of the crunchiness he wanted, but i could have finished it in 7 minutes as I like my veggies pleasantly crisp and firm.
The light soy sauce entered in 1 tbspoon was the next to the doors of the divine territory and you could add some more sauces if you wish. He added 2 tbspoon of another Chinese sauce(you could use Oyster sauce – vegetarian obviously ), in went the deep fried tofu and sprouts and the smell of the veggies announced the arrival of the stir fry. It took only 2 more minutes for the tofu and the sprouts and the sauces to amalgamate. The high flame was now finally extinguished. The crunchiness, the colour, the aromatic smell and the taste all added to make the Freeman Show compulsory and a sure repeat.