"BLAND" CHICKEN STIR-FRY (CHINESE)
Got home last night, eager to flex my kitchen muscles after some time on the road, but my wife was feeling a little puny and wanted something bland, er, delicate that wouldn't upset her tummy. The solution? A chicken stir-fry, basically a simplified moo goo gai pan, designed with little to offend.
Preparation: Chop about 8 ounces of Nappa cabbage (Nappa? Napa? Anybody know whether this stuff is named after the wine country?) into chopsticks-size bites. Wash about a dozen smallish white mushrooms and leave them whole. Cut 8 ounces of boneless chicken breast into bites. Whack off two fresh-ginger coins; cut a large garlic clove in half. Set aside 1 cup hot chicken broth, stirring in 1 teaspoon sesame oil. Dissolve 1 heaping tablespoon corn starch in a little water. Chop one or two scallions.
Stir-fry: Heat 1 tablespoon peanut oil in a sizzling-hot wok. Stir-fry the garlic and ginger until it's aromatic, then add the mushrooms and chicken, stir-frying just until the chicken turns white. Stir in the cabbage, toss once or twice, then add the broth. Reduce heat, cover the wok, and simmer just until the cabbage is crisp-tender. Stir in cornstarch, cook until thickened, then serve with white rice, garnished with the scallions. (Salt and/or hot sauce optional for the healthy.)
We passed on wine since she wasn't feeling well, but it occurred to me that the Fetzer Gewurz, of all things, might have made an interesting match.