Cooking Chinese food at home can be a very healthy and different way for Americans to cook. But if you want to start cooking this way, you need to stock your kitchen with some Chinese cooking essentials. Don’t worry: You rarely need any ingredient that is hard to find or expensive. However, you will be much better off in your Chinese meal cooking if you have these essentials in your kitchen.
Chinese rice wine
Rice wine is a great way to add interesting flavors to many Chinese dishes, and it also works well to mask any strong odors in the food, such as fish. If you do not have rice wine available, you also can use dry sherry. Also, you can substitute rice wine for at least half of the oil in your Chinese recipes. It results in less fat and calories per dish.
Chinese black mushrooms – dried
You will find these tasty mushrooms in open bins in many Asian grocery stores and markets. It is fine to buy the cheapest black mushrooms available for your stir-fries and soups.
Garlic is used all the time in Chinese cooking to season the oil in which you are cooking the ingredients. Fresh garlic is a staple of all Chinese dishes.
This sauce is made from oysters that are boiled, and several seasonings. This sauce is very savory and tasty, and is used in many Chinese meat and vegetable meals. Oyster sauce is a critical component of all Cantonese cooking.
Rice vinegar is very delicate in flavor and is not nearly as harsh as regular vinegar. It also can be used as a substitute for part of the oil that is called for in a Chinese dish.
When it comes to actually doing the cooking of your Chinese food, you are best off if you kitchen is stocked with a good wok. However, if all you have available is a frying pan, you still can make decent
Chinese stir fry if you adhere to a few guidelines:
If you have these basic ingredients, a good frying pan (a wok always is best), and a quality rice cooker, you should have great success with your Chinese recipes.