Friday, February 6, 2009

Stir Fried Vegetables with Cottage Cheese – Chinese style

S and I were in a dilemma about what to cook for dinner. I had been in the kitchen all afternoon baking, cooling and frosting the carrot cake. We wanted to cook something quick so we could watch a DVD. When that is the situation, nothing better than Chinese or Italian to the rescue. We had just had pasta, so we decided it was going to be stir-fried vegetables. Sometimes S and I eat just that, but tonight he wanted it with something more filling. So I used up the rest of the cottage cheese and made Paneer Fried Rice, with just that and Shah Jeera. Quite different from the recipe published before. I didn't cook it the Chinese way - this tastes like the Paneer Fried Rice you get in Eden, a popular Chennai restaurant chain.

Here’s what we needed –
1. Carrots – diagonally sliced

2. 1 red hot pepper and 1 green chilli

3. Green bell pepper

4. Onion – finely sliced

5. Cabbage – shredded

6. Radish – Sliced finely

7. French cut green beans

8. Cottage cheese – cut in chunks

9. Garlic – finely chopped

10.Tomato sauce, Chings Red Chilli Sauce, All-purpose stir fry sauce, Soya sauce, Schezwan Sauce, Ajinomoto, Salt, Sesame oil, Sesame seeds, Chilli Vinegar

You can use any vegetable of your choice. Bok Choy would be perfect for Chinese stir-fries.

Here’s how we dished it up –
1. In a pan, heat some sesame oil. Add the sesame seeds and let them roast a bit.

2. Fry the garlic, red and green chillis and then sauté the cottage cheese lightly with a bit of salt. Traditionally, Tofu is served as a meat replacement. We settled for Cottage Cheese.

3. Add the carrots and let them cook. They take a little longer to soften than the other vegetables. Having said that, S and I love our Chinese food to be properly Chinese – slightly crunchy and not well cooked.

4. Toss in all the other veggies except the cabbage. Add salt and continue stirring

5. Add all the sauces and vinegar – just dashes and dabbles. I didn’t use an exact measurement.

6. Add the cabbage, sprinkle ajinomoto, continue stirring. Check and adjust seasonings as required.

Sesame oil and seeds are crucial, but if you want to skip them, you can go ahead and do so.

S was raving about the stir-fry. I’ve made it before, but this time he found it way better. I guess it’s the sauce blend. He gobbled it up last night, only after saving some for today’s lunch!

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