Whether it's chicken, pork, or beef, this marinade is my go-to recipe when I want to cook a quick stir-fry dinner. It takes 30 minutes to marinate and another 10 to 15 minutes to stir-fry everything.
Why this recipe works:
- Salt and soy sauce tenderize meat, help it retain moisture, and increase its savoriness.
- Sugar helps browning characteristics.
- Oil helps distribute fat-soluble aromatic compounds over the meat.
- Cornstarch insulates the meat form the high heat of a hot wok, ensuring that it doesn't overcook along its edges.
- Aromatics like pepper and wine add a nice basic flavor to meat that pairs well with other ingredients.
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Here are a few meat and vegetable pairings to get you started:
Basic Stir-Fry Marinade 1/2 pound chicken, pork, or beef 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon sugar 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper (white or black) 1/2 teaspoon Shaoxing wine 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce 1 teaspoon oil 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch In a large bowl, add ingredients in the order they are listed. Mix well and marinate for 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
- Yield:Makes marinade for 1/2 pound sliced beef, pork, or chicken
- Active time: 1 minute
- Total time:30 minutes
- 1/2 pound sliced or diced chicken, pork, or beef
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon ground pepper (white or black)
- 1/2 teaspoon Shaoxing wine
- 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon vegetable, peanut, or canola oil
- 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix with hands to coat thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate for 30 minutes before cooking.