China—Dry-Cooked Green Beans

 

China Sidedry cooked green beans

Dry-Cooked Green Beans
(Serves 4)

Stir-fried green beans in oil flavored with garlic and ginger. This is a wonderful way to cook green beans any time. Delicious!

1 lb. fresh green beans
1 C hot water
1/4 C vegetable oil
2 tsp. ginger root (minced)
1 tsp. garlic (minced)
1/2 tsp. salt
2 T scallion (chopped)
1/2 tsp. sugar
1 T soy sauce
1/4 C chicken broth
1/4 C water

Leave the green beans long.

Heat oil in a skillet or wok over medium heat and add ginger and garlic. Stir-fry 3 minutes, then add beans, salt and scallions, stir-frying 4 more minutes.

Add sugar, soy sauce, chicken broth and 1/4 C water. Cover and cook till beans are tender, about 5 minutes. Add more water or broth if necessary. When beans are wrinkled and no liquid remains, stir-fry 1 more minute and serve immediately.

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Tips & Glossary

Many ingredients used in Chinese cooking probably aren’t in your spice shelf, but you can find them at Asian grocery stores. To avoid frustration, make a list of the items before trying recipes.

Agar Agar: dried seaweed used as a gelatin. Buy it in sticks (or strips) and soak in cold water to soften.

Chili Oil: buy it or make your own. For a recipe, see Hunan Chicken.

Chinese Cabbage: aka “Nappa”;long, white stalks with light green crinkly leaves.

Deep Frying: use a deep-fry thermometer to reach the recipe's correct temperature; if the oil isn't hot enough, the food will be soggy. When cool, the oil can be strained, refrigerated, and re-used.

Dried Shrimp: tiny, salted, sun-dried shrimp that add a pungent flavor to Asian cooking. Soak before using.

Five-Spice Powder: blend of star anise, cinamon, cloves, fennel and Szechuan peppercorns. Like allspice.

Peppersalt: buy or make your own. Heat 2 T Szechuan peppercorns in skillet 5 min. Grind into powder and mix with 2 T salt.

Sauces: Hoisin (sweet, from soybeans); Oyster (like soy, from oysters); Sweet Bean (canned, salty, from soybeans); Hot Bean (hot & salty, from soybeans and peppers).

Sesame Paste: from gound sesame seeds; substitute with peanut butter.

Sweet Rice Powder: from glutinous rice; used in place of flour in many desserts.

Szechuan peppercorns: dried reddish berries, fragrant and mildly hot.

 

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