There are few general things to remember when you are learning how to cook with a wok. First of all, keep in mind that you will be using high heat with your wok. That means you need to select an appropriate oil that can be heated without smoking, like soybean, corn, and peanut oil. Butter, olive oil, and sesame oil are usually not appropriate, as they tend to burn. This high heat also means that the cooking process happens fast, so it is important to pay attention. Here are some great ways to create authentic Chinese cooking and other great dishes in your wok:
How To Cook With A Wok
- Stir-frying: Most people think of Asian woks chiefly as tools for stir fry cooking. This method involves quickly cooking ingredients in hot oil over high temperature. Common stir fry ingredients are broccoli, bok choy, ginger, garlic, mushrooms, peppers, and a protein source like chicken, beef, or tofu. It’s important to have everything assembled before you start cooking, as the process will happen very fast. Chop all your ingredients into same-sized pieces so they will cook uniformly. Heat the wok then drizzle it in oil and allow to heat for about 30 seconds. Add the ingredients in batches and cook until done, vigorously stirring to keep them moving. Serve warm.
- Deep-frying: Woks can also be used for deep frying. Make sure to be careful, as you will be working with very hot oil. Its important for the temperature to reach 375 degrees in order to cook correctly, so use a deep-fry thermometer to check it before you add your ingredients. Fry ingredients in small batches, adding a few at a time and stirring, then removing and draining on a tray or a paper towel-lined plate.
- Steaming: If you know how to cook with a steamer, than you basically already know how to steam with a wok. You can steam on a wok using either a bamboo steamer or a steamer rack. If you have a bamboo steamer, you can simply place it over your water-filled wok, cover it, then bring the water to boil and allow the ingredients to steam until ready. If you are using a steamer rack, similarly place the rack in the wok, fill the wok with water (it shouldn’t touch), cover the wok and bring the water to a boil. Place your ingredients on a heat-safe plate and put the plate on the rack. Reduce the heat to medium and steam until ready.
- “Wok Cooking”, The Learning Channel
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