April 08, 2011

Broccoli Stir-Fry with Sesame and Cashews

When I was designing a recipe for Spicy Orange Beef, I knew I'd want to serve it along with a vegetable stir-fry and some rice.   I didn't really even prepare a recipe for the vegetable dish, having decided I'd just stir-fry some broccoli, toss in some other flavors and add a basic Chinese-style sauce.  When it came time to actually make the meal, I improvised when it came to the broccoli dish, just tossing together some ingredients and seeing how it turned out.   I jotted down what I did as I went, and I'm glad I did, because this one turned out pretty good.

The broccoli is stir-fried for a bit, along with some seasonings, then liquid is added and the skillet is covered, to steam-cook the broccoli the rest of the way.   Sesame flavor comes from both sesame oil and some sesame seeds.   Most of the rest of the ingredients - soy sauce, oyster sauce, ginger, garlic - were pretty obvious.  At the last minute I decided to add to the nutty elements of the dish provided by the sesame seeds and oil.  I topped the dish with some cashews and served it up.

There's really not much else to say about this one, other than to reiterate that it's pretty darn good, but as always, I encourage you to try it out and see for yourself.

Broccoli Stir-Fry with Sesame and Cashews

yield = 4 servings

1/2         cup low-sodium chicken broth
2            tablespoons oyster sauce
1            tablespoon soy sauce
1            tablespoon cornstarch
1/2         teaspoon white pepper
1            tablespoon peanut oil
1            tablespoon Asian (dark) sesame oil
6            cups broccoli florets
1            tablespoon peeled, grated fresh ginger
1            tablespoon sesame seeds
2            teaspoons minced garlic
1/2         cup water
1/2         cup cashews

Whisk together chicken broth, oyster sauce, soy sauce, cornstarch and white pepper in a bowl.  Set aside.

Heat the peanut and sesame oils in a large skillet over medium heat.   When the oil is shimmering, add the broccoli and stir-fry 3 minutes.  Clear a spot in the center of the skillet, add the ginger and cook until fragrant (about 1 minute), then add the garlic and sesame seeds and cook 30 seconds.

Add the water to the skillet, then cover and cook until the broccoli is tender (about 2 minutes).   Add the oyster sauce mixture, stir together and cook until the sauce thickens and coats the broccoli (1-2 minutes).  Remove from heat, stir in the cashews and serve.

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