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I was using first a frying pan and then a wok to make
stir-fry. After we got the microwave, I decided that surely it
could be used to do the same thing and it would do it easier
and faster. So, I started experimenting and have developed a
method which has proven quite satisfactory. I have testimonies
from 15 grandchildren.
If you have a microwave, you know that the time of
cooking changes rapidly with the amount of food to be cooked.
So, you will have to judge that according to the amount you are
When I am getting ready, I collect around me all the
small scraps of vegetables from the refrigerator and garden and
plot the cooking pattern, beginning with those which demand the
longest time. I have used many kinds of meats: bacon, ham,
chicken, etc. Most commonly, I start with a quarter pound of
ground beef; cook it just enough to be able to pour off excess
fat. Then comes the longest cooking vegetables which are
usually carrots, then potatoes, onions and a clove of garlic,
all cut up into your acceptable size. My acceptable size is
normally larger than Polly's. Each time I add a vegetable, I
stir everything together so the flavor gets swapped around.
You never completely cook any vegetable or the meat, when it is
first added because you continue to cook everything during the
whole process. I add vegetables and finally get down to the
last things, like celery, Swiss chard, spinach and mushrooms.
It is best, as you get a feel for cooking time, to have the
vegetables slightly crisp as the Japanese do.
One nice variation I have done is to get a head of
cabbage which will fit in the center of the cooking dish with
room around it for the other vegetables. After the meat is
slightly cooked, I put the cabbage, whole, in the center and
add and stir everything as indicated. The cabbage in the
center absorbs flavors from everything and when all is done,
the cabbage can be cut into slices with each serving and it is
delicious. As you near the end of the cooking cycle, you add
the spices which you like salt, pepper, etc. I always add at
least a touch of salsa! May you have many, varying delicious

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