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Five-spice powder star of simple stir-fry

By Linda Gassenheimer, Tribune News Service
Published: August 16, 2023, 5:52am

Five-spice powder gives a pungent, aromatic flavor to stir-fried vegetables. The powder is a mixture of five ground spices usually consisting of cinnamon, cloves, fennel seed, star anise and Szechuan peppercorns. It adds the exciting flavors of Chinese cuisine to this simple vegetarian dinner.

The secret to wok cooking at home is to make sure the wok is very hot. The oil should be smoking. Also, when the ingredients are added wait several seconds for the wok to regain its heat before stirring them.

Helpful Hints:

  • You can substitute walnuts, almonds or pecans for peanuts.
  • You can find Chinese five-spice powder in the spice section of the market.
  • You can use angel hair pasta instead of Chinese noodles.

Five-spice Stir-fry Vegetable With Peanuts

Yield 2 servings. Recipe by Linda Gassenheimer.

3 tablespoons Chinese rice vinegar

2 teaspoons Chinese five-spice powder

5 garlic cloves, crushed

3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce

1 teaspoon honey

2 tablespoons water

1 teaspoon cornstarch

3 teaspoons sesame oil, divided use

2 cups broccoli florets

2 cups sliced bok choy, including the green and white stalks

2 cups snow peas

1 cup red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces

1/4 pound Chinese noodles

1/2 cup unsalted, dry roasted peanuts

Place a large saucepan three-quarters filled with water on to boil. Mix vinegar, Chinese five-spice powder, garlic, soy sauce, honey, water and cornstarch together in a small bowl. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in a wok or skillet over high heat until smoking. Add the broccoli and stir-fry 2 minutes. Add the bok choy, snow peas and red bell pepper. Stir fry-for 2 minutes. Add the sauce and continue to stir-fry for 1 to 2 minutes until the sauce thickens. Meanwhile, add the noodles to the boiling water and boil for 3 minutes. Remove the vegetables to a bowl. Drain the noodles and add the remaining 2 teaspoons oil to the wok or skillet. Add the drained noodles and stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes. Divide the noodles between two dinner plates. Add the stir-fried vegetables on top and sprinkle the peanuts over the vegetables.

Per serving: 612 calories (40% from fat), 27.5 g fat (4.2 g saturated, 13 g monounsaturated), no cholesterol, 25.1 g protein, 71.9 g carbohydrates, 10.6 g fiber, 847 mg sodium.