A good stir fry doesn’t have to be complicated or bad for you. In fact, it’s quite easy to make a fairly healthy one and you can do it in about an hour. This is an easy cashew stir fry recipe that anyone can make. The most difficult part of this is dry-frying the tofu. But when you get the hang of it, you’ll be fine!
How to dry-fry tofu
Before you get started, you need to prepare your tofu. To do that, slice a package of firm tofu into triangles about 0.5-0.75″ thick. Squeeze them gently by pressing them with a paper towel or clean towel. Now, you’re ready to go. Spray a wok with oil and heat it to high heat. When the oil starts to smoke a bit, turn it down and add the tofu. Stir it gently to avoid breaking it. Your goal is to preserve the shape, evaporate most of the water, and crisp up the outside until it looks like this:
Don’t worry if you don’t get it perfect. When I did it the first time, it looked like I cooked tofu that had been used in a vegan food fight! Total massacre!
Now, a lot of people don’t like tofu because they don’t know how to make it. When done right, tofu absorbs the flavors of the food it’s cooked with. It’s more or less the same here. The tofu doesn’t absorb as much in this case, because we’re basically sealing it up.
Preparing your sauce
See that picture below? It’s got fish sauce in it. I don’t use that stuff anymore because I no longer want fish juice in anything I eat. This is just the picture I happen to have. You can find really good vegetarian fish sauce and oyster sauce in Asian stores or on Amazon. Buy them.
Stir it all up and set it aside.
Prepping the veggies
Have all your veggies ready to go. Smash & dice up a few cloves of garlic. Then, slice some onions and red bell peppers into fairly thick strips. For garnishing toward the end of your cooking time, slice up some green onion like you see in the picture below. Basically, as much as you want, depending on how much sauce you make for this easy cashew stir fry recipe.
Cooking the easy cashew stir fry
In a heated wok, add a tablespoon of oil – something that can tolerate high heat (i.e., NOT olive oil). Heat that till it gets fairly hot and add your onions. Cook those for about a minute. Then add the dry-fried tofu and heat it through. Next, add the garlic and peppers. Heat all that through for another minute or so – the goal here is to not over-cook the peppers. You want them a bit crunchy. And you certainly don’t want to over-cook the garlic because that’s gross.
Next up, add your sauce and a big handful of dry-roasted cashews and stir it around a bit to coat everything.
The last step: Turn off the heat and throw in a good handful of green onions (spring onions for fancy people) and stir it in.
That’s it! You’re done. Easy cashew stir fry recipe, right?
Now, all you have to do is find a fancy IKEA plate and put your artistic skills to work. Something like this.
Enjoy! Play around with this one – try different vegetables like broccoli or snap peas and baby corns – whatever you like.
By the way, the wok I use is a cast iron one. It’s amazing and I wouldn’t want any other kind. If you want one, buy it here!
One package of firm/extra-firm tofu
Low-sodium soy sauce
Veggie Oyster sauce
Veggie Fish sauce
Palm sugar or brown sugar
Cornstarch (super optional)
Red bell pepper
Green (spring) onion
Fancy-ass IKEA bowls