For a while I struggled to make a good bean sprouts stir-fry that is juicy, crispy, sweet and savory. My version was lackluster with shriveled sprouts lying sadly in a watery mix. It was while visiting a colleague and watching him preparing it that I had my epiphany.
He soaked the sprouts in hot water to blanch them before stir-frying. The blanched bean sprouts were already safe to eat, therefore the purpose of the subsequent cooking was for flavoring only which can be done extremely quickly with just a few tosses in the wok. The fast cooking meant there was little loss of juice, flavor, shape or color of the bean sprouts.
I like the simple combination of bean sprouts and red onion slices. It is more common to use spring onions instead of read onions, but I have a weakness for the nice color and extra sweetness of the latter especially if they are lightly sauteed. They add so much excitement to almost any dish.
Preparation: under 5 minutes Cooking: 2 minutes
- 250g bean sprouts, washed and drained
- ½ red onion, sliced
- 1 ½ tbsp oil
- ½ tbsp soy sauce
Place the bean sprouts in a large bowl and pour in nearly boiling water, stir a few times. Soak for 1 minute. Drain well.
Heat the wok, add oil. Add red onion, stir fry lightly for 20 seconds. Add bean sprouts and toss a few times. Add soy sauce, stir fry for about 40 seconds. Remove from heat and serve.
If you still need some time to prepare for the cooking after the bean sprouts are blanched, it is best to cool them under running water then drain well to stop them from turning brown.