I went to the supermarket the other day to grab a “few things.” As it turned out I had to buy an extra reusable shopping bag to get my 12 pounds of groceries home. It’s a good thing the store is only a kilometre away and that I’ve started working on improving my upper body strength or that walk would have felt a lot longer than it was. I honestly cannot help myself once I get in the middle of all those vegetables. But can you blame me? Look at this haul! Being in the produce section of the grocery store is almost like a meditation of sorts for me. I get caught up in the colours and shapes and sizes and limitless possibilities of the meals I can make with all of this glorious food.
The other day someone asked me if I make meal plans for myself. I don’t. I mean not in the sense that I know what I’m eating for the next 2, 3 or 4 days. I think about what animal protein I’m going to cook for dinner (which will usually be the next day’s lunch too) so that I can take it out of the freezer the day before, but beyond that there is not a lot of planning. Once it comes time to start cooking (one of my most favourite things to do besides hang out with my hubby and pups, photograph food, golf and blog) I usually just throw open the fridge door and see what speaks to me. Not literally of course. That would be weird. Can you imagine if my broccoli was like “Hey! Eat us.” Whoa.
Stir-frys are so simple, quick, nourishing and satisfying that I could eat them every day. But I don’t. Because like most things, sometimes you really can have too much of a good thing. The other great thing about them is you can make it with whatever vegetables you want (you know the ones that “speak” to you). They also make great leftovers for lunch. Win, win, winning!
One more thing: eat with chopsticks every chance you can. I worked with a lady (who became a dear friend) years ago and every day that she was in the office we would eat our lunch together and we decided that we would use chopsticks (except for soup). We ate so slow, savouring each bite. And we talked between each mouthful. That was the whole point. To enjoy our time and food, together.
Author: Cassie Elliott
Prep time: 20 minutes Cooking time: 15 minutes
Pork and Vegetable Stir-fry:
- 2 pork shoulder chops (about 10 oz total)
- 1/2 a head of cauliflower
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 1/2 yellow bell pepper
- 1/2 orange bell pepper
- 2 small zucchini
- 1 red onion
- 4 stalks baby bok choy
- 3 medium/large carrots
- 3 stalks celery
- 1/4 head (small) red cabbage
- 6 stalks asparagus
- 1 pound white mushrooms
- 6 cloves fresh garlic, minced
- 3 – 4 tablespoons avocado oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup coconut aminos
- 2 teaspoons fish sauce (I use Red Boat)
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger powder
- 1 teaspoon tapioca starch
- Slice the pork chops into 1/4″ strips. Pro tip: it will be super easy to slice the pork if you do it while still partially frozen.
- Stir the ingredients for the sauce together in a small bowl and set aside.
- Chop up all the vegetables. If you have a kitchen mandolin now is a great time to use it for any of the vegetables that you can. This will cut down your prep time.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of avocado oil over medium -high heat in pan or wok. Throw in the pork and season with a little salt and pepper. Cook 5 minutes and remove from pan. Set aside.
- Heat the remaining avocado oil. Add in the harder vegetables first: cauliflower, carrots, cabbage and onion and stir-fry for 3 – 4 minutes. Add asparagus, celery, cabbage and cook another 2 minutes. Toss the rest of the vegetables in along with the garlic and cook for another 3 – 4 minutes or until fork tender. Add the pork back in and mix in the sauce. Cook 1 minute.
- Remove from pan and serve, with chopsticks.