Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Stirring Things Up

My afternoons and evenings are usually more hectic than my mid-mornings.  After I rustle my kids all out the door, they return home in the early afternoon from school buzzing into the kitchen to descend upon the cabinets and fridge like ravaging locusts.  Then I must rustle them all out the door again.

As I am shuffling the kids to obligations and playing pingpong with pickups, drop-offs, and stay-to-watch events, if I haven't precooked and brought insulated containers full of dinner on-the-go, my brain is swirling with configurations of what will be quick and decent for when they return and descend upon the cabinets and fridge like ravaging locusts...again.   Of course, I want to make something healthy and hardy, but I also want fewer cooking utensils = less cleanup = less late night scrubbing of crusted over dishes and pots.  Here is a simple dish I throw together often.  It is easy to omit or substitute ingredients when creating, so suit it to your taste.  Its a breezy stir-fry. And it uses only one pot!

List of Ingredients:
Pork loin
Vegetables (carrots, broccoli & cauliflower)
Brown rice (precooked - great to make ahead and store portions for several uses) or use the
     quick-cook kind and boil it in the pot before adding pork and oil to sauté.
Soy sauce

Time: approx. 20 min.

For my family of five, I use:

  • 1tsp. olive oil drizzled in large non-stick sauté/dutch oven pan.  Mine is a Calphalon and it is AMAZING.  I didn't even have to splurge for it.  My mommy gave it to me for Christmas :)
  • 1/4 Lb fat-trimmed pork loin diced to 1/2 inch cubes.  Saute until turning white, but not cooked completely through.

Then to SAME pot I add:
  • 1 Lb frozen cauliflowers florets/cuts
  • 1 Lb frozen broccoli florets/cuts
  • 3 tablespoons diced garlic
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce

My mega cartons of stuff

Broccoli, cauliflower, garlic, soy and pork:

Combine and sauté about 5 minutes, adding a couple tablespoons of water to create a slight steam bath:

Dump on top:
  • 2 cups brown rice precooked.  My brown rice looks pale, but its brown alright.

Stir around to incorporate rice into soy/garlic sauce and vegetables:

 Once the first vegetables are getting tender and pork is thoroughly cooked, I add:
  • 1 cup chopped fresh carrots
  • a shake of nutmeg
  • several shakes of ginger
I like my vegetables like pasta-al dente.  Especially carrots. So this method preserves the integrity of the crunch for carrots and a mild firmness for the florets:

Keep stirring to shift the rice.  Saute approx 5 more minutes:

Stir in nutmeg

Stir in ginger to taste

 Sit. Relax. Chow.

*permission to leave dishes till tomorrow :>