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January 04, 2011: Kinpira

January 4, 2011

Japanese cooking has such a large range; from the detailed and complex recipes that Chef Saito can design to the most simple and basic dishes like “kinpira,” a style of cooking which could be translated as “simmer” or “sauté.”

Simple, healthy, and quickly made, this dish is just green beans, matchsticked carrots, chili pepper, oil and spices. I took a bag (12oz.) of (washed) green beans and clipped off the ends at 20°. I skinned and matchsticked one large carrot, each matchstick about 1-1/2″. If you have fresh chili peppers, deseed and trim into thin strips. I had only dried peppers, so I took about 1″ and soaked it into the kinpira “sauce” which is 1 Tblsp. each of mirin, rice wine vinegar and soy sauce for one half hour and then cut into thin strips.

In about 2 Tblsp. of corn oil, sauté the beans, carrots, and pepper in the oil with 1/4Tsp. each of sal de mer and pepper, in a wok at medium high heat until browned. In the final seconds add the kinpira sauce. Serve immediately.

There are a plethora of things you can change or add: tofu, meat, other veggies. Try a sprinkle of nori fumi furikake (rice seasoning) or strips of nori (seaweed) for another Japanese taste variation.

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