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March 19, 20090 found this helpful

Get a spice mixture called 'Chinese 5 Spice Powder'.

You usually can buy it right in the grocery store, but there is a company called Penzey's that has an online store. This spice blend tastes just like restaurant chinese food.

Or try some rice wine vinegar, also from grocery store. I sprinkle it on before serving if it's for me, but I usually serve it on the side because my husband can take it or leave it.

Basically, if I'm cooking Asian I look in that section in the grocery store. I've bought Hoisen sause, oyster sause, chili oil, sesame oil (I add this last before serving because the taste is strong, but delicious). All great additions. I'm an experimentor when it comes to food.

Also try fresh lime juice spritzed over your dish just before serving. I love this, you won't believe the difference it makes.

Last time I stir fried I use lemon olive oil - got it as a gift, and my dish turned out to taste more Asian than using regular vegetable oil.

I think most people use peanut oil for stir fry, I'm not sure and haven't tried it myself.

Also, roast a few peanuts, shells and skins remove, in a Teflon frying pan. On medium high, but watch carefully! They will burn easily. Just toast them and turn them while roasting. The roasting brings out the flavor of all nuts. Cool them, chop them, and sprinkle on dish before serving.

I also have a problem with slightly mushy vegetables, can't seem to get it right.

Also, have you every tried 'tempeh'? You can get it in a grocery store refrigerated health food section, or at Whole Foods Market - we have these in Houston, Texas, USA and I know they're nationwide. It's high in fiber, low in carbs and calories and is really satisfying. The one I buy comes in a rectangle, so I make cubes out of it, sprinkle with soy sauce (I use low sodium kind), heat up a little vegetable oil and brown the tempeh. It's really good added to stir fry.

If you have any more ideas, I've love to hear them. I need Asian food help!

Thank you.

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