The Power of the Wok

shutterstock_154600415A wok is an essential item to have in your kitchen, believes chef Tony Tan. According to him, the thin metal vessel is where magic happens, largely in part to the heat brought to the food. Such heat triggers a chemical reaction in the amino acids and sugars, resulting in a distinct fragrance that is unique to a stir fry. The Chinese call this wok hei and believe it cannot be replicated with any other kitchen tool.

A wok should be non-stick, preferably round-based and cast iron or carbon steel, said The Unlimited Cuisine Company chef. Most woks come with a lid that's great for braising, but this won't be needed for a stir fry. A stir fry should be cooked quickly and in a small amount of oil (preferably grapeseed), allowing the steam to escape.

Good Food also suggested having oven mitts or a folded tea towel handy for tossing, as wok handles can get very hot. Protect your hands and then give all your ingredients a really good toss.

When it comes to cleaning the tool, wash under hot water and wipe with a sponge or cloth. Try not to scrub, as this will damage the wok's coating. Finish by drying the wok over a flame and then rubbing it with grapeseed oil to prevent rust.

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Mireille Kilgour

Mireille Kilgour

Mireille Kilgour has been an entrepreneur for 35 years in the hospitality sector. French born, she has been an accomplished business owner and operator for a number of Sydney venues. Leading the industry with high profile institutions such as Lamrock Café Bondi, she has endless passion for the industry, and now has the pleasure of supporting restaurants to fill their tables with the new Good Food Gift Card program.