Its been several months since I contributed an article to my website and JustOneOpinion.com. I have been really busy but today I feel like writing and sharing some Chinese recipes with you. These are not banquet dishes, these are family dishes.
Family dishes are called “shia fan” dishes, which literally means dishes that makes the rice go down. For the common people this type of food is quite inexpensive, but the ingredients are cooked with so much flavor, by the adding of hot peppers, garlic, ginger and onions, that sometimes these “shia fan” dishes taste better than banquet dishes.
You do not need a big piece of meat; one chicken breast, a few shrimp, one pork chop, or a small piece of steak would be enough to feed a whole family. To these ingredients we add a little bit of this and a little bit of that, ingredients that are already in your refrigerator. You might have half a green pepper or red pepper, a carrot, some celery sticks, green onions, some nuts: cashews, almonds or peanuts, ginger, garlic and hot pepper sauce or flakes. Add these to the meat and you can make a very healthy and flavorful meal that will feed the whole family. We always serve rice on the side.
Once you know the art of stir frying, you can always find some things to make a beautiful dish. The actual cooking time is very short, but the preparation and cutting can take time and you need many little bowls to keep each ingredient separate. You marinate the meat in the sauce you have prepared, but each vegetable should be stir fried separately to keep its color and consistency.
Even in cooking we never forget to practice the “Yin-Yang” philosophy. There is never a Chinese dish that is all white or all dark, there are always contrasting colors and textures in keeping with our philosophy of balance and opposites.