Next month hosts a pretty scary date for me: my first birthday to carry me into my late twenties. It feels so strange saying that, let alone imagining myself as really being twenty-six and quite possibly all grown up. High school graduation was eight years ago? How’d that happen? Does that mean it’s time to throw away my Cookie Monster slippers? (No. It does not.)
When you’re young, you never really have a true concept of age. To my 10-year-old self, twenty-six was old. It was so far away; surely, by then I’d have a white picket fence, 1.5 kids and a dog, keep all my receipts in a well-organized file folder and just generally have life all sorted out.
In reality, though, I’m starting to realize that no one has everything sorted out. It might appear like we do, but we’re all just little floundering around blindly trying our best to figure it out as we go.
As much as I don’t feel like an adult, I think I’m on a pretty good track. I co-own an apartment with my basically-husband, I’m on a pretty satisfying career path, I can appreciate a nice bottle of wine, I actually own a dog and can do my taxes without crying. Actually, scrap that. I always cry when I do my taxes. That will never change.
I guess one of the main things I’m noticing with age (not that I’m old, just older) is that things are slowly starting to go downhill. I creak when I get up from the couch. Hangovers last for days. My metabolism has become lazy. I wear my glasses more often for the sole purpose of hiding unexplainable bags under my eyes. (“You look so tired!” “I GOT 9 HOURS OF PEACEFUL SLEEP, THANK YOU FOR POINTING OUT I’M GETTING OLDER.”)
One way to counteract all that is to eat more vegetables. I’m trying, I really am. I know I should be eating a ton of spinach and kale and broccoli and all that other green stuff. But it’s hard. Especially with my ravenous sweet tooth.
I’m trying to be a bit more healthy by eating less refined sugar. I’m not on a diet – one look at some of the recipes I’ve been posting lately will prove that – but if I can replace refined sugar with natural sweeteners, that’s a step.
This stir-fry is a great example of delicious food that’s sweetened naturally. This way I get to enjoy a hearty, healthy, vegetable-packed meal while still catering to my love-of-all-thing-that-are-sweet. Juicy chicken, fresh peppers, tangy bok choy, crispy water chestnuts, all tossed in a sweet and tangy honey ginger sauce and eaten atop a plate of aromatic basmati rice. Taste bud heaven.
There’s something oddly satisfying about making a good stir-fry. The flavour possibilities are endless, since any number of yummy sauces can be whipped up and combined with whatever meat you have on hand and whatever veggies you’re craving. They’re a great way to use up any leftover veg that’s been hangin’ out in your fridge for just a tad too long, so you’re not only cleaning your fridge, you’re cleaning your insides with all the good-for-you-food that you’re eating.
I use the measurements in this recipe lightly. If you want a tangier stir-fry, use less honey, more rice wine vinegar. Swap veggies, add more soy sauce, smother in hot sauce, do whatever you’d like.
Just don’t forget the water chestnuts. No stir-fry is complete without water chestnuts. Trust me.
|Honey Ginger Chicken Stir Fry|| |
- 2 tsp cornflour
- ¼ cup chicken stock
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil
- ½ cup honey
- 1 Tbsp soy sauce
- 1-2 tsp rice wine vinegar
- 1 Tbsp vegetable oil
- 4 large chicken breasts, chopped into 1-inch pieces
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 Tbsp freshly grated ginger
- 1 red pepper, sliced
- 500g baby bok choy
- ½ cup sliced water chesnuts
- 1 cup bean sprouts
- Sesame seeds, to serve
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced, to serve
- Basamati rice, to serve
- Place cornflour in a large bowl. Gradually whisk in the stock until smooth. Add sesame oil, honey, soy sauce, and rice wine vinegar; set aside.
- Heat half the vegetable oil in a large, heavy bottomed skillet (or wok) over high heat. Stir-fry chicken, in batches, until just cooked. Transfer to a bowl.
- Heat remaining oil in skillet. Saute onion for about 5 minutes until softened. Add ginger and pepper, cooking for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add bok choy, honey mixture and ½ cup water. Stir well, cover and steam for about 10 minutes until wilted.
- Return chicken to skillet and cook for another 2 minutes until sauce has thickened. Serve on top of rice and sprinkle with sesame seeds and green onions.