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How to Make Takeout-Style Kung Pao Chicken

J. Kenji López-Alt 11 comments

As much as I now love real-deal Sichuan kung-pao chicken, my absolute favorite Chinese dish as a kid was this mildly spiced Americanized version—and to be honest, I still love it today. Just because it's a Chinese-American standard, complete with slightly-gloppy-sauce and mild heat doesn't make diced chicken with peppers and peanuts any less delicious. Here's how to make it at home. More

Chinese Aromatics 101: The Mild and Aromatic Ginger, Scallion, and Garlic Flavor Base

Shao Z. Post a comment

Does China have an aromatic-vegetable equivalent to French mirepoix? Not exactly, but there are some general categories that are helpful in understanding how Chinese flavor bases work. In the second part of this series, we take a closer look at one of them: The more mild ginger, garlic, and scallion flavor base of Guangdong province's famed Cantonese cooking. More

Stir-Fried Sliced Pork With Yellow Chives

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 4 comments

Thin, tender strips of lean marinated pork are tossed with Chinese chives and yellow chives in a light coating of soy sauce and Shaoxing wine seasoned with white pepper. This is a quick and easy dish that goes from fridge to table in about 30 minutes. More

The Food Lab: The Wok Mon Converts Your Home Burner Into a Wok Range. For Real.

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 106 comments

A couple months ago I was approached by Glen Lee, an inventor who claimed to have an ingenious new device for cooking on a wok at home. If it works the way he promised it would, it's going to revolutionize home wok cooking in the same way that the Baking Steel revolutionized home pizza-making. I played around with it a lot, measuring, tinkering, and generally cooking up a storm. I'm happy to report that this thing solves a problem I've been trying to work around for over a decade. More

Stir-Fried Lo Mein With Beef and Broccoli

Serious Eats Shao Z. 5 comments

Beef and broccoli might only be a classic combination in the American Chinese repertoire, but that doesn't make it any less delicious. In most restaurants, you'll find it served with rice, but I like to stir-fry it with hearty lo mein noodles. More

Easy Stir-Fried Chicken With Ginger and Scallions

Serious Eats Shao Z. 11 comments

A simple and classic stir-fry that combines tender strips of lean marinated chicken breast with scallions and ginger. This light and easy dish comes together in under an hour. More

Spicy Stir-Fried Beef With Leeks and Onions

Serious Eats Shao Z. 10 comments

This quick stir-fry combines tender marinated flank steak with onions and leek greens, flavored with a simple but balanced sauce made with soy sauce, fish sauce, and sesame oil. More

Ask The Food Lab: Can I Stir-Fry On An Electric Cooktop?

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 15 comments

"I am an avid teen food who adores her asian dishes, especially the creativity of stir fry. Now, I make it all the time but know that my end result could be exceptionally better. You had on the blog about doing the perfect stir fry on the grill but unfortunately I am in a college dorm and only have access to an electric stove. My question is: how does one not steam their vegetables while at the same time not use too much oil AND how do you not burn your corn starch sauce to the pan?" More

Stir-Fried Rice Noodles with Eggs and Greens

Serious Eats Chichi Wang 2 comments

Stir-frying dried rice noodles is much the same as stir-frying rice, in terms of the amount of oil, the seasonings, and the ingredients you want to add. Eggs, vegetables, ground meat - anything which can be parsed into little bits, works well for stir-frying with the noodles. More

The Food Lab: Stir-Fried Velvet Chicken with Snap Peas and Lemon-Ginger Sauce

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 6 comments

A classic Chinese-American dish of chicken and vegetables coated in a mild gingery, lemony sauce. Marinating the chicken in a mixture of cornstarch and egg whites gives it a silky, smooth, moist texture. For best results, use a wok set in an outdoor coal-fired grill for extra high heat cooking. More

Stir-Fried Velvet Chicken with Snap Peas and Lemon-Ginger Sauce

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 3 comments

A classic Chinese-American dish of chicken and vegetables coated in a mild gingery, lemony sauce. Marinating the chicken in a mixture of cornstarch and egg whites gives it a silky, smooth, moist texture. For best results, use a wok set in an outdoor coal-fired grill for extra high heat cooking. More

The Food Lab: For the Best Stir-Fry, Fire Up the Grill

The Food Lab J. Kenji López-Alt 50 comments

Take a look in a Chinese restaurant kitchen and you'll see the wok chef tossing the contents of his wok with one hand while scooping up bits of sauce and seasonings with the wide flat ladle held in his other, all the while adjusting two valves set by below the surface with a flick of his knees. An no, we're not going to building a Chinese restaurant kitchen at home today. What we are going to do is work our way through a few different common home methods of stir-frying to see if we can come up with the ideal way to approximate restaurant-quality dishes. More

Chinese Pepper Steak (Stir-Fried Beef with Onions, Peppers, and Black Pepper Sauce)

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 11 comments

Wok Hei, the smoky, charred flavor or well-cooked stir-fries can make or break Pepper Steak, the classic Chinese-American staple. Our version combines tender steak with bell peppers and onions in a savory black pepper-flavored sauce. For best results, we cook it on a wok set on an outdoor coal grill. More

Mapo Dofu With Ramps: Quite Possibly The Greatest Food Ever

J. Kenji López-Alt 15 comments

I've never hidden my love for Mapo Dofu, the Sichuan dish of soft silken tofu flavored with beef and mouth-numbing, citrus-y Sichuan peppercorns. But it doesn't have to be a season-less dish. The past few years I've taken to adapting it to the spring by adding in a few big handfuls of sliced ramps, the ephemeral wild spring onions that how up by the bushel at farmers' markets (or if you're lucky, sister's backyard!). More

Mapo Dofu (Tofu) with Ramps

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 11 comments

[Photographs: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt] Note: Both the chili bean paste and the Sichuan Peppercorns can be bought online (follow the links) if you don't have a good Chinese market nearby. Use tofu labeled "silken" in a hardness range of medium... More

Modernist Cuisine: The Wok Shot

J. Kenji López-Alt 18 comments

With stunning images like this, you'd think that computers and Photoshop played a huge role in the production of the artwork from Modernist Cuisine. You'd be wrong. How did they get a shot of noodles being tossed in half a wok? Easy. "We cut a wok in half and tossed noodles in it," explains Nathan Myhrvold. More

Sichuan Dry-Fried Long Beans

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 6 comments

[Photograph: Robyn Lee] Note: Yard-long beans are slightly starchier and more robust than standard American green beans. You can find them year-round in Asian supermarkets. If unavailable, the second choice is dark green French beans (sometimes labeled haricôts verts). Regular... More

Sichuan Dry-Fried Beef

Serious Eats J. Kenji López-Alt 2 comments

Wok Skills 102: Dry Frying

J. Kenji López-Alt 22 comments

Dry frying, a technique unique to Sichuan cuisine, can be accomplished one of two ways. The general idea is to cook your main ingredient—whether it's a protein or a vegetable—in a relatively large amount of moderately hot oil without any kind of batter or protective coating. As it cooks, the intense heat drives off interior moisture, thereby concentrating its flavor. Simultaneously, the exterior becomes desiccated (hence "dry"-frying) and browned. More

Wok Skills 101: How to Braise (Homestyle Cooking)

J. Kenji López-Alt 8 comments

Of all the wok techniques we've discussed this week, braising is perhaps the simplest, and certainly the most relaxed and least messy. It's no wonder that it's the method employed by most home-style dishes. More

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