Friday, September 4, 2009

Trader Joe's General Tsao Stir Fry

This week, I embarked on another kitchen crusade to feed the hungry Ironman chef. He suggested I use our Trader Joe’s General Tsao Stir Fry Sauce. With 130 calories per serving and zero fat, this sauce is a very healthy alternative to the take out General Tsao and it probably took the same amount of time to make as it would have to arrive at my apartment for delivery. I was not able to take a photo of this because my camera was in Joe's instead I added a photo of a guard in Cambodia...close enough to General Tsao, right?

Coated fry pan
Small pot to boil veggies
Rice cooker

• Trader Joe’s General Tsao Stir Fry Sauce (1 Container)
• Two large carrots
• One head of fresh broccoli (it has so many more vitamins than frozen broccoli)
• Two medium sized chicken breasts (cut it into cubes or however you like it. I usually put salt and pepper on it for flavor)
• Two cups of Basmati rice

First take care of the rice because it takes the longest. We use a rice cooker that we got on Clement Street for $14.00. It was a good investment. However before you put it in the rice cooker you have to rinse the rice. Using this electric pot designed to boil water fast is simpler than making rice on the stove, because you don't have to watch it.

Determine the amount of rice needed—most recipes call for 2 parts water to 1 part rice. Use the plastic measure provided. Put rice and water in the pot. Put the pot into the base and cover with the lid. Push down the switch to start cooking. The switch will automatically return to the "Keep warm" setting when the rice is done, usually in about 20 minutes.

Stir Fry:
Cut up your veggies so they look like stir fry size. And put them aside. Fill a pot with some water so you can submerge the broccoli spears. Now heat the pot and the water.

Ok now pour the General Tsao sauce into the fry pan. Now, add water to the General Tsao container and shake it and then pour it back into the pan. The sauce is thick so the water helps thin it out a bit.

After the sauce starts simmering, throw in the cut up chicken to the pan too. (Note: you can dip the chicken in flour and fry it a little bit if you want to go that route. Its more General Tsao like and you would add the sauce to the chicken instead of the other way around.) Now, throw your broccoli and carrots in the water in the pot. When you see the broccoli get pretty green, stop the presses! Drain the veggies.

Check out the chicken. Is it mostly white or cooked? If it is, add your veggies. Turn the heat on low and let everything hang out together and get to know each other.

How about the rice? Is it done? On our cooker, a light changes color.
When everything is done, you can serve it up. This served about three people. In our house, its one helping for him, one for me and one to bring to work the next day for lunch.

However, I had an unfortunate experience when I tried to bring this to work for lunch… the top to the Tupperware came off and the General Tsao sauce got all over my back pack including part of my computer. Luckily everything was OK, but I continue to smell General Tsao at my desk!

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