I thought this was a fantastic way to get my green tea without drinking it. I love the taste of the Jasmine in the tea, but for whatever reason I just don’t like to drink green tea on its own (it may be more of an oxidant to me and my system). But I bought this tea because of its heavenly invigorating smell and love of Jasmine, but haven’t been able to drink it. I tried it with my favorite vegetable stir-fry instead and it was a fabulous subtle fragrant accent. Rice is still great plain (or brown) but this really gave it an allure I treasure.
Jasmine Tea and Jasmine Rice.
Put about a tablespoon in a cheese clothe or tea ball if you have one, and then tie it up with some string. Place it in your boiling water, about a cup, and then add cup of rice. Turn down, cover, put on back burner.
Assemble the ingredients for stir-fry. I love the ground turkey because it soaks up the sauce and becomes super tender, you could substitute whatever meat or tofu you might prefer. I get a 1/2 lb ground turkey, I like it almost 1:1 with my vegetables. Speaking of veggies, grab whatever you have on hand, but I definitely think carrots, a cabbage and a pepper are the essential base. After that broccoli, cauliflower, fennel, asparagus, kale, I have Brussel sprouts today. If you are close to an Asian store Thai Basil is fabulous in this, but the fennel can give the same hints of licorice and sweetness. I like fresh lemon grass when I can get it (boiling it the broth to infuse it before hand), but I found the squeeze bottle at Kroger’s and it’s an ok substitute. I’ll go through traditional Asian sauce ingredients below, but here’s the vegetables:
1 Yellow, Red or Green (yack) Pepper
Handful of a cabbage or celery: Brussel sprouts, Bok choy, even romaine if that’s what you have
Broccoli, cauliflower, fennel, asparagus, kale
Chop them up into bite size pieces, try to make them all the same size
Assemble your sauce, there are 3 times to sauce. Flavoring the meat, deglazing the pan with vegetables and then a top sauce.
This sauce is a classic combination of a mix between chinese and Thai sauce. It has a lot of ingredients but once you get use to having them in your pantry and mixing them up to your liking, you’re going to love having them to whip up better chinese than you can get at any (most) restaurants right at home (hysterically cute video of girl describing Asian basic sauces).
Here are ingredients for your sauce:
Soy Sauce — Vinegar/wine — Chili Paste —- Sweet (sugar or honey) —- Fish Sauce
Coriander — Ginger — Garlic — Sesame (seeds and oil)— Lime
Cornstarch or Potato starch (if you want thickening)
Did you know? Naturally fermented Dark Soy Sauce has 10 times the antioxidant power as red wine!!)
Easy Peasy : Add equal or to-your-taste, soy (I use less), fish (maybe teaspoon), vinegar, wine, toasted sesame oil, then splashes of chili paste, ginger and garlic. You can also add honey, molasses or dark sugar here (I add it later to the topping sauce), or leave it more stringent.
This is what I do, but you can do the same sauce or mix up flavor for stronger layers where you’d like. I probably change this every time in some way.
1st Sauce for meat: Smaller amount of soy-fish-vinegar-spice-sesame-ginger-garlic. Lime, lemongrass and coriander (pepper flakes for more spice) directly on meat.
2nd Sauce: Dominant vinegar/wine for the deglazing. Vinegar-fish-ginger-garlic-soy-sesame-lemongrass. Lime to taste, small amount of honey, broth, spice if desired.
3rd Sauce: Mostly reduced chicken stock, soy, vinegar, honey, fish sauce, lime to taste. Reduce then thicken with cornstarch.
Heat Oil in pan (mix of sesame and/or grapeseed, maybe olive and definitely coconut). Fry the meat for a bit and then add the 1st sauce to flavor the meat, sprinkle with coriander, spice and lime. You could also brown the meat first and then add the sauce, I’ve had it both ways and liked it both ways. Remove the turkey after it has thoroughly cooked, absorbed sauce and browned slightly.
Now that you’ve set the meat aside. Re-oil the pan, turn to high heat (if you have a thick bottomed pan), you’re going to stir-fry your vegetables, but first put in a large handful of sesame seeds, let them just start to brown and then toss in your vegetables. Stir Stir Stir. Got your sauce ready? Toss it in, let it reduce. Add meat back in. Stir again, let soak, remove veggies and turkey from pan. In your empty pan add about 2 cups of stock, and basic sauce again, reduce, add cornstarch (with cold water) to your desired thickness (I like it very thin). Add as much spice, acid or sweetness as you’d like (I add a spoon of honey to the sauce now). Pour on top of vegetables and rice.
A fantastic Asian sauce with ingredients you can use all over in your other recipes (fish sauce is great for homemade ketchup and BBQ sauce!). Although getting the flavor combinations just right, that magical mix of sugar-fat-salt-umami with acids, spice, sweetness, crunch, deep richness takes some practice. When you are using these natural sauces this not only makes the meals taste better, you should feel great after meals like this. These remarkably healthy sauces, so demonized because of industrialized imitations, are really where we can pack in some benefits and make our meals truly healthier!