Tahini Stirfry

Originally, this was to be a post about Tofu Stirfry with Tahini-Tamari Soybeans. Of course, originally, it was supposed to be made a few weeks ago too.

Out of three local stores, one carried an overpriced and unappetizing jar of tahini. Dried soybeans didn’t seem to be available at any of them. The recipe had to wait until we could source the ingredients.

And so, a week passed.

We went to the downtown farmer’s market and decided afterwards that we would go to Sage Market, a Japanese specialty store a few miles away. This turned out to be a great idea — lots of great Japanese items I didn’t think I would find here that I was used to getting from 99 Ranch Market in California. Also, dried soybeans for cheap. One down, one to go.

A few days later, we went to what is becoming our favorite store for produce and general organic/frou-frou ingredients: Sunflower Farmer’s Market. They had a few to pick from, so we picked the cheaper can that I recognized from elsewhere. Sadly, unlike my favorite grocery in the world, Central Market, they didn’t have it fresh in the deli. Now, we could make the recipe waiting patiently on the back burner.

The recipe is from The Rice Cooker Cookbook, and calls for, unsurprisingly, a rice cooker to cook the beans. The rice cooker they call for must be really different from mine as mine boiled over, then refused to stay on Cook, then boiled away all the water in a hurry (because we had to leave the lid open with the porridge lid to keep it from boiling over)… and after two hours had passed and we still had rock-hard beans, we gave up.

So, dinner tonight changed to Tofu Stirfry with Tahini-Tamari Sauce Over Rice.

Then I took out the tofu.

Yikes.

Let’s just say, those leftovers were a bit longer ago than I realized.

Out came some frozen chicken and leftover frozen veggies and I set to work building a typical stirfry with a not-so-typical sauce.

It came out pretty well, actually. Tahini is a mild sesame seed butter, tastes a lot like really mild peanut butter, and produced a fairly bland-ish sauce because I trusted an unknown recipe with an abundance of an unknown ingredient. Now I know – 1/2 cup goes an awfully long way. I still prefer the stronger peanut sauces, such as those often featured with satays or Thai dishes, but it was good in a pinch. I’m definitely going to experiment further with tahini, especially with some hummus recipes.

Oh, and the beans? Still cooking away on the stove – four hours and counting and still not cooked. Beans annoy me.

Tahini-Chicken Stirfry with Rice [printable recipe]

Serves 2 – 3

  • 1 boneless, skinless chicken breast, sliced thin
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced or crushed
  • 4 Tbsp soy sauce, divided
  • 1 tsp hoisin sauce
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper, divided
  • 1/2 tsp ginger
  • 1/4 cup tahini
  • 1/2 onion, sliced
  • 1 package frozen veggies or random fresh veggies hanging out in the fridge
  • cooked rice

Mix together 2 tbsp soy sauce, hoisin sauce, ginger, 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper in a small bowl or glass.

In a small saucepan over low heat, combine tahini, garlic, 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper and enough water to make a smooth, creamy sauce. Keep on warm.

In a wok or medium skillet on medium to medium high heat, saute onions until turning brown on the edges, remove. Add veggies, cook until done then remove. Add chicken, saute until half done, add sauce. Continue cooking until done (about 4 minutes all together), then add in veggies and onions.

Remove from heat, stir in tahini sauce. Serve over cooked rice.

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