Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Spring is in the Air

stir fryImage by ginnerobot via Flickr

This week has been lovely - the first signs of spring in the air. The sun has been out for a few hours every midday, which is a welcome change from the constant grey skies that are typical of Lima winters. The birds have been going crazy out in the huge bougainvillea behind my house - it's full of all kinds of little flying things. Lots of flowers blooming, too - my hibiscus has the prettiest triple yellow blooms.

Still cool in the evenings, though, so I'm still cooking food that's comforting and warming. Last night, I made a pork/broccoli/cauliflower stir fry. I started with the biggest stock pot I have, and the water on to boil because I was going to be cooking a pound and a half of spaghetti. I put about 2 tbsps of salt in the water, and a glug of oil. I'm not going to get into the discussion of whether salt or oil is necessary when boiling pasta... but I use both. ;)

While I waited for the water to boil, I took my pork tenderloin out and started cutting it up into very small cubes - no bigger than 1". Then, same thing for a half a head of broccoli and a half a head of cauliflower - small, bite-sized florets.

By the time I got all that good stuff chopped up, my water was boiling and I added my spaghetti. I took out my big old saute pan, added some oil, and started searing the pork. I sprinkled some Aji-no-Moto on - that's MSG - and a little bit of salt. Once the pork was seared, I dropped in the cauliflower. About 2 minutes later, I added the broccoli. I sprinkled on some powdered ginger - about a teaspoon. Then I added about a cup of soy sauce and a tablespoon of white vinegar, stirred it all up, turned off the heat and covered.

Now, the spaghetti was done, so I drained it in the colander. Then, last step! I dumped all that pasta on top of the meat and veggies and stirred it all together with a bamboo spoon. Taste it and adjust what you think needs adjusting - a little more soy sauce? salt? ginger? Maybe a little chinese five-spice, or some red pepper if you like it spicier. It's all up to you.
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