Do you recall the “5 a day” campaign, which set out to encourage us to get at least 5 servings of fruit and vegetables a day? After consulting the Canadian Food Guide, I discovered that the recommended daily servings of fruit and vegetables has been increased to an average of 8 servings per day (depending on gender and age). We all have the best of intentions in meeting these goals but sometimes it’s not that easy.
I often turn to stirfrys and curries to sneak in all of the vegetables my family needs. They are quick, easy and adaptable which is ideal for weeknight cooking. Feel free to alter recipe this in any way you see fit…a few suggestions would be to swap out the asparagus for green beans (which are in season right now) or add some mushrooms. The idea is that this recipe caters to whatever is in your vegetable crisper at the moment.
Chicken & Prawn Stirfry with Black Bean Sauce
The whole idea of this dish (aside from the veggies) is for it to be quick. Therefore, I turn to purchased black bean sauce. My favourite comes from our local farmer’s market but there are several good ones out there. In fact, you should let me know your preference, as the farmer’s market season is coming to an end in October and I will have to find a new source.
- Glug of canola oil
- 1 tsp. sesame oil (can be eliminated if you don’t have it on hand…it simply adds a bit more flavour)
- 2 large chicken breasts (skinless)
- However many prawns you feel like peeling
- 1 large crown of broccoli
- 1 bell pepper…yellow or orange are great for visual appeal
- 1 bunch of asparagus, washed and trimmed
- 1 c. (250 ml) of your favourite black bean sauce
- 1/2 c. grated carrot
- 1 bunch of scallions, white and light green parts only
1) Chop up your chicken into large bite-size pieces…you don’t want to go too small or it is prone to over-cooking.
2) Now turn your knife on the vegetables…chop them into whatever size and shape your family prefers. As I said, this dish is flexible and easy.
3) Heat up the canola oil (and sesame oil if you are using) in a large non-stick pan or wok, if you have one.
4) Add your chicken and allow to cook until it is no longer pink on the outside.
5) Add the broccoli, asparagus, pepper and mushrooms if you are using them. Saute until your veggies are starting to sweat a bit on the outside and are beginning to soften.
6) Add the black bean sauce and give it all a good stir. Allow to cook away for about 5 minutes.
7) Add prawns and grated carrot. Continue to cook until the prawns are that tell-tale pink colour, that lets you know they are done.
8 ) Remove from heat and sprinkle the scallions on top.
9) Serve with rice.
All said and done, this dish takes as long to prepare as the rice does to cook. If only the rest of my life was timed out so perfectly.