Kevin Dundon isn’t just known for his corned beef and soda bread.
Around St. Patrick’s Day, this Irish chef stays busy talking about traditional cuisine, but now that the holiday is behind us, it’s still worth checking out his new book, “Kevin Dundon’s Back to Basics” (Mitchell Beazley, $24.99).
As the title suggests, Dundon walks readers through the staples that every cook should master, from risotto and coq au vin to upside down cakes and fudge. With each dish, he explains how you can improvise on the basic recipe, as well as substitutions if you don’t have something on hand.
This chicken and broccoli stir-fry is about as elemental as you can get. Heat the oil (peanut, vegetable or canola are best, he says) on high until it’s nearly smoking and then fry the meat in batches, waiting a few seconds before tossing the meat so that the sides can start to brown and caramelize. Also, taste as you go with the oyster sauce because some brands are saltier than others. You could use carrots, cauliflower, celery or just about any other vegetable instead of (or in addition to) the broccoli here. Garnish with sesame oil and sesame seeds, if you’d like.
Chicken and Broccoli Stir-fry2 Tbsp. sunflower oil, divided
2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into thin strips
Salt and black pepper
1 head of broccoli, cut into florets
1 red onion, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 green chili, such as serrano, thinly chopped
4 Tbsp. oyster sauce
1/2 cup water
Prepare all the ingredients and place them by the side of your stove.
Place a wok or large frying pan over a high heat and add half the oil. When hot, add half the chicken, season with salt and pepper and stir-fry for 2–3 minutes, until brown and cooked through. Transfer to a warm plate. Cook the remaining chicken in the same way and add to the plate.
Add the remaining oil to the pan. When hot, stir-fry the broccoli, onion, garlic and chili for 1 minute. Return the cooked chicken to the pan and pour in the oyster sauce and water. Cover with a lid and cook for 2 minutes, until the vegetables are just tender.
Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary, then serve immediately on a bed of boiled rice or fried rice. Serves 4.
— From “Kevin Dundon’s Back to Basics” by Kevin Dundon (Mitchell Beazley, $24.99)