When dinner time rolls around on a weeknight, veggie dishes can be a great go-to. Especially if you’ve been eating less than optimally during the day.
This stir fry (aka sauté or skillet dish) is ready to step up. It doesn’t take much prep work and the cooking time is fairly brief. So you can whip up dinner in a jiffy.
That’s our kind of short-order cooking.
We make stir fry at least once a week. It’s a great way to clean out odds and ends in the fridge. We usually just gather likely looking ingredients that we have on hand, then season them to taste (we typically use Indian or Asian spices/flavors, or sometimes Mediterranean).
We specify ingredient quantities in this recipe. Most of the time, though, we just eyeball the amounts. So you don’t need to aim for exact measurements.
Prep time for this dish is 10 minutes or so. Cooking time adds 15 to 20 minutes.
This recipe yields 3 to 4 main-course servings (depending on how large your appetite is).
Leftovers keep well for a couple of days if refrigerated in an airtight container. BTW, the leftovers are great for breakfast or lunch the next day.
- ~1 tablespoon cooking oil
- 1 onion, diced or sliced thinly
- 1 red bell pepper, diced
- salt to taste (about 1 teaspoon kosher salt for us, but see Notes)
- 3 cloves garlic, minced or sliced thinly
- 1-inch piece of ginger, minced finely (peeled or not)
- 1 to 2 tablespoons chili crisp (to taste; see Notes for substitutions)
- 1 tablespoon curry powder, preferably Madras (see Notes)
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 12 to 16 ounces cooked, diced sweet potatoes (see Notes if you don’t have cooked sweet potatoes on hand)
- 15-ounce can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- ½ cup water or vegetable stock (or you could use chicken stock, although that wouldn’t be vegan)
- ½ to 1 cup frozen peas (to taste)
- 2 to 3 tablespoons chopped cilantro (or parsley, if you prefer)
- Heat a large frying pan over medium stovetop heat. When the pan is hot, add the cooking oil. When the oil is heated (about 15 seconds – it’ll shimmer), add the chopped onion and red bell pepper. Add salt to taste, then sauté until the onion is just translucent (4 to 5 minutes; it’s OK if the onion isn’t totally tender).
- Add the chopped garlic and ginger, then sauté for 1 minute.
- Add the chili crisp, curry powder, and soy sauce. Stir to combine. Then add the diced sweet potato and the chickpeas. Add the water, bring the mixture to a simmer, then lower the heat to medium low. Cover the pan and cook for 5 minutes.
- Bring the heat up to medium, uncover the pan, and add the peas. Cook for 2 to 4 minutes, until the peas are cooked through.
- Add the chopped cilantro, then stir to combine.
- Serve and enjoy.
- We think this dish is enough all by itself, so we don’t usually serve it over rice. But you might prefer to.
- If you don’t have leftover cooked sweet potatoes on hand: Just scrub and peel a sweet potato, then cut it into dice. Place the pieces in a covered microwave-safe dish, along with a scant tablespoon of water. Nuke for about 5 minutes, until tender (you can do this while you’re cooking the onions). Voilà, cooked sweet potato.
- You could substitute white potatoes, but you’ll lose a lot of flavor.
- Chili crisp is a spicy and flavorful Asian chile-based sauce/condiment that gets its crunch from roasted onions. You can buy it at many ethnic markets and grocery stores, and it’s available online.
- No chili crisp on hand? Just substitute any Asian chili sauce. Sriracha would be terrific. You could even use several dashes of a hot sauce, like Tabasco. Or just add some red pepper flakes to the mix.
- We use a prepared curry powder in this dish. We like Madras-style powder, which tends to be a bit hotter than some other versions. But use whatever you like.
- We sometimes mix our own curry powder. But many commercial powders are quite good, so we’re tending to use those more often.
- We like to use chickpeas in this dish because they pair so well with curry spices. But you could substitute almost any kind of bean you fancy.
- If you’re not aiming for a vegan dish, you could substitute pork or chicken for the chickpeas. Just cut the meat into thin strips, then sauté them until done (5 minutes or less). Remove the cooked pieces from the pan and set them aside, then proceed with cooking the onions and red bell pepper.
- You can substitute green, yellow, or orange bell pepper in this dish. We tend to favor red, so that’s what we use.
- We use kosher salt in cooking. It’s less salty by volume than regular table salt (the crystals are larger and more irregular, so they pack a measure less tightly). If you’re using table salt, start with about half the amount we suggest. But always season to your taste, not ours.
“Love me some stir fry!” said Mrs. Kitchen Riffs. “The sweet potato is really a nice touch.”
“Yup, I yam pleased with this dish,” I said.
“Stirring up trouble again?” said Mrs K R.
“Just showing off my skillet humor,” I said.
“More like out of the frying pan, into the dire,” said Mrs K R.
Guess I should stop stirring the pot.
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