Nutty Fried Rice

Good morning!  I am hopeful that everyone reading had a wonderful weekend.  We ended up staying in South Carolina with my brother and SIL an extra evening so we could enjoy the gorgeous weather on Sunday instead of being in the car.  And the extra baby snuggles made the drive yesterday morning totally worth it.  My newest nephew is absolutely precious.  He’s calm and hardly cries and has a head FULL of hair.  I could stare at him all day.  We enjoyed dinner out the first night at The Oak Table.  We also had a pizza night as well as a steak night thanks to my SIL’s parents.  Counting down to our next visit already!

This week is pretty typical – thankfully – and we’re preparing for my niece’s first overnight visit by herself.  Cannot wait to spoil her silly.  After we arrived home yesterday I came up with the meal plan for the week and gave Big Guy some options to pick from.  I should have known he would pick Nutty Fried Rice over ANYTHING because we adores cashews and stir fries.  This dish is full of broccoli, shiitake mushrooms and rice but has an absolutely addicting sauce that is mixed in for the ultimate nuttiness.

My favorite bites definitely included cashews – my favorite nut!

nuttyfriedrice

Just a reminder that the key to dishes like this one is to prep ALL your ingredients before you ever start cooking.  I also love that this stir fry uses precooked brown rice (Uncle Ben’s) as a timesaver.  If you’re allergic to peanuts, sub in almond butter, cashew butter or even sunflower seed butter.

I promise you’re going to go NUTS for this dinner!

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Steak and Asparagus Stir-Fry

If there are two foods that Big Guy loves it would be asparagus and beef.  Combine them both in an Asian-inspired stir-fry and he’s an even happier man.

Spring is finally here (on the verge of summer with these 90 degree temps) and the asparagus is looking better than ever.

The key to a successful stir-fry is making sure everything, I mean everything, is prepped before you ever get your wok heated.  The one thing I did start cooking before I started the stir-fry was the jasmine rice because I knew it would take 30 minutes.

I cut the asparagus and the red bell pepper along with the green onions and then prepared the “sauce.”

The steak is sliced thin and I found that letting it hang out in the freezer for about 15 minutes made slicing so much easier.

The stir-fry comes together in a flash and smells amazing.  The only changes I made were using fish sauce instead of oyster sauce and subbing in tamari for the soy sauce.  If you like a little more heat, add more red pepper flakes.

The rice was perfectly sticky (I like sticky rice for a stir-fry) and was a great base for the beef and vegetables.

Because of the short cooking time at such a high heat, the veggies were crisp-tender and their flavors still stole the show.

Beef on a weeknight.

I must want something.

Shrimp and Broccoli Stir-Fry

What’s not to love about a stir-fry?  First of all, a stir-fry cooks super fast which means dinner is on the table in no time.  Secondly, you can combine your protein, veggies, and carbs in one dish and it’s healthy.  Thirdly, clean-up is usually a breeze.  And finally, you get to use chop sticks.

chop stix

Let’s be honest, the chop sticks are my favorite reason.  Big Guy has been super jealous of my purple chop sticks for years and his new mother-in-law hooked him up with his own set.  Nothing says “Welcome to the family” like connected chop sticks with a giraffe on top.

This stir fry is my absolute favorite stir fry ever because we got to use our new dishes!  It’s the small things, folks.

But in all seriousness, the sauce in the Shrimp and Broccoli Stir-Fry is so delicious.  And the best part about this dish, I only had to grab three things at the store:  shrimp, broccoli and green onions.  You could use any protein you want, I would imagine and I’m sure you could use another veggie, perhaps some bell pepper or asparagus.  But don’t change the sauce.  Don’t change a thing.  Ginger, garlic, soy sauce (or tamari), rice vinegar, honey and a few red pepper flakes do amazing things when combined.

Make sure to serve the stir-fry over some rice (I used brown) so that you don’t lose a drop of the sauce.

all about the sauce

all about the sauce

Did I mention I really loved the sauce?

Spring Stir-Fry

This week it’s all about quick dinners.  And this stir-fry is no exception.  The beauty of this recipe is that you can substitute in what you have on hand.  I made my portion vegetarian with edamame while Big Guy enjoyed the addition of chicken.  Additionally, instead of carrots I went with sliced red bell pepper.  If you don’t use the chicken, dinner will be ready in under 15 minutes.  I served our Spring Stir-Fry over white rice.

Hen Party 116

 

I almost didn’t get green onions at the store but I’m so glad I did!  The freshness really brightens up the dish.  Also, I didn’t come armed with an intense grocery list.  Who knew I was out of soy sauce (tamari)?  I sure didn’t.  Fish sauce came to the rescue.  Seriously – don’t freak out if you’re missing an ingredient.  There is almost always a substitution.  Have fun in the kitchen!  Don’t make cooking dinner a chore.

Hen Party 117

 

The calorie count is rather low for this dish (without the rice) as a dinner – so if you’re not into rice, you might want to double your portion or add another starch.