Taste of Olney
Although temperatures are staying stubbornly high, Danny embraced autumn this week with a spread of colorful veggies and tangy tahini sauce for a stir fry recipe that is all his own. This stir fry allows home chefs a bit of creativity – it tastes great with whatever veggies and proteins fit your taste profile.
“This is good on rice or pasta,” Danny said. “The fresh ginger really lightens it and sets it off. Use a lot.”
Stir-frying is believed to have originated in ancient China during the Shang Dynasty (circa 16th–11th century BCE). Cooks would use large woks - round-bottomed vessels - and a small amount of oil to quickly prepare food over high heat. This method was ideal for conserving fuel and preserving the flavor, texture, and nutrients of the ingredients.
In the 20th century, Chinese immigrants brought stir-frying to the United States, where the technique is loved for its quick preparation, vibrant flavors, and the ability to incorporate a variety of ingredients.
Tahini, the main flavor ingredient in Danny’s sauce, is a creamy paste made from ground sesame seeds. Its origins also date back thousands of years, to ancient civilizations in the Middle East and Mediterranean. The earliest evidence of tahini production comes from ancient Babylon, around 4000 BCE, where sesame seeds were cultivated and processed.
Tahini quickly became a staple in several culinary traditions: in ancient Egypt, it was used as a condiment or dip. In Greek and Roman cuisine, it was known as “sesame paste” and was incorporated into dishes like hummus and used to flavor desserts. In the Middle Ages, tahini was used in savory dishes like falafel and in sweets like halva in Arab and Persian cuisine. In India, it became a crucial ingredient in tahini chutney.
Tahini also found its way to America in the 20th century, primarily through the growing popularity of Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisines. Today, it is available at supermarkets – including Stewart’s Food Store - and is beloved for its sweet, nutty flavor. Try it out!.
As always, all ingredients are available at Stewart’s Food Store.
Serves 4. Ingredients:
Tahini stir fry sauce: 1/3 cup tahini 1/3 cup coconut aminos or ¼ cup low-sodium soy sauce ¼ water 1 tsp rice vinegar ½ tsp red pepper flakes Top with sesame seeds and red pepper flakes Stir Fry:
2 tbsp olive oil 1 cup shredded purple cabbage 1 cup mix of red, yellow, green bell peppers, diced 1 garlic clove, minced 1/2 cup onion, chopped 1 zucchini, sliced 2 tbsp fresh ginger, grated 1 pound thinly sliced beef Four servings of rice or pasta
Preparation: Step 1: Prepare rice or pasta, using directions on the package.
Step 2: Heat olive oil in a wok or large, deep skillet over high heat until oil starts to shimmer. Add garlic and ginger, and stir until fragrant. Add veggies, stirring for about 3 minutes, then add beef.
Step 3: Add tahini sauce once beef is cooked and mix until everything is well coated.
Step 4: Serve sizzling hot over rice or pasta. Sprinkle with sesame seeds. Enjoy!!