What’s For Dinner? Stir-Fry

Stir Fried Veggies

I was walking to work this morning and it’s raining lightly. I don’t own an umbrella, and wouldn’t use it if I did. So it has always amused me when the barest hint of rain causes everyone on the streets to clutter up the sidewalk with their umbrellas. Often what ends up happening during rush-hour is that there are so many umbrellas that they bounce off each other, causing the intended protection to the owner to be repeatedly compromised by the umbrellas of everyone else.

This morning as I was walking I saw an example of that which I just have to share. Walking down the sidewalk a few steps ahead of me was a girl carrying an umbrella which was so enormous it took up the entire sidewalk in both directions. The umbrella was easily as wide as this girl was tall, and there was no possible way anyone could walk by her in either direction without disturbing the umbrella, and usually simply knocking it over. It must have been so heavy…
As I was walking, I noticed a potential situation which, if the girl hadn’t been playing with her cellphone with her other hand, she likely would have noticed as well. The rain was light, but the rooftops always capture quite a bit, and occasionally the drainage is overhead for whatever reason. Ahead of us was one of those overhead drainage spots, where the water was coming down hard. And approaching from the other side was someone moving at a similar speed, so that they would arrive at the overhead drainage at the same time as the girl with the enormous umbrella. Of course, you know where this is headed…
They arrived at the same time, the person from the other side pushed the umbrella out of the way, and the girl with the huge umbrella was soaked by the overhead drainage. And by soaked, I mean that she’ll be needing to head back home and change. The thing is, the overhead drainage was narrow. I had no trouble avoiding it entirely, as was true for the person coming in the other direction. And if this girl hadn’t had a too-big-to-fail umbrella, my guess is that she wouldn’t have been playing with her cellphone, and would have seen it and avoided it. Instead, she was drenched. And from my perspective, it is due entirely to her own negligence.
Is there a lesson here? You be the judge. I’ll bring it up in the Questions at the end.

Stir Fry; What you’ll need:

  • Stir-Fry Veggies!
  • Carrots, long-cut
  • Zucchini, long-cut
  • Crimini Mushrooms, quartered
  • Olives, broken in half (not sliced; they’re prettier when they’re broken)
  • Sweet Potato, long-cut
  • And many, many more!
  • Coconut Oil for frying

Obviously, there are a million differen vegetable varieties which will work! I’ve been on a huge stir-fry kick recently, and my wife and I have been loving it! Here are the stir-fries that we’ve made recently (you’ll notice a lot of similarities):
Saturday Lunch Stir-Fry: Carrots, Zucchini, Quartered Crimini Mushrooms, Sweet Potato. I served this with a slow-cooked grass-fed beef shank steak which I cooked in rum, and spiced with pepper and ginger (no, no salt for us).
Sunday Lunch Stir-Fry: Steak strips, Sweet Potato, Zucchini, Ginger, Green Olives (broken in half), Quartered Crimini Mushrooms. I served this with a side of Avocado.
Sunday Dinner Stir-Fry: Sweet Potato, Zucchini, Quartered Crimini Mushrooms, Ginger, Yellow Onions. I had some left-over shank steak, which I had been slow-cooking all day in bone broth, ginger, and garlic; it was amazing!!

A big spicing tip for stir-fry: When you’re adding spices, particularly larger spices like fresh ginger, fresh garlic, or fresh rosemary, you should completely cook your stir-fry before adding the spices. Right at the end, with maybe 30 seconds of cook time remaining, put the spices in, stir thoroughly, turn the heat off and cover the pan and let the spices start to absorb some of the ambient heat and water vapor to fill the meal with their flavors. If you add the spices too early in the cooking process the large pieces of food that you’re using for a stir fry will not hold on to the spices, and they’ll burn in the pan. But if you add them after taking the food out of the pan, then they’ll have too little heat, water vapor, and time to really let their flavors come out in the food. Timing with spices in a stir-fry is really important!


  • What kind of a lesson do you think I am supposed to take away from the umbrella story?
  • How do you think the girl reacted in that story? Did she realize immediately that it was probably her fault, and curse herself under her breath as she retreated home? Or did she start yelling obscenities at full volume at the guy walking in the other direction?
  • Have you seen any similar “Learning Opportunities” recently?

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0 thoughts on “What’s For Dinner? Stir-Fry

  • laurasmess

    This looks delicious. I’ve never put olives in a stir fry fry before but I ALWAYS break them! I agree, they’re much more ‘rustic’ and attractive! Hm. Re the questions; you’ve picked a difficult scenario! I do think that people shouldn’t “text and walk” (or even worse, “text and drive”) but it seems common place these days. I think both parties should have been more observant and respectful to other users on the sidewalk. I’ve seen a friend of mine walk into a sidewalk bicycle rack whilst messaging on her phone. They absorb most of your attention. Quite inappropriate whilst moving!

    • urbanpaleochef

      Thank you Laura! Another tip: like the spices/herbs, add the olives late in the cook cycle (though before the spices). They’re delicious hot, but they don’t need any cooking to be tasty.

      Yeah, no texting and walking… And no using golf-umbrellas on the sidewalks!
      I would have laughed so hard if a friend of mine walked right in to a bike stand! Did your friend at least have a sense of humor about it?

  • Carl Mason-Liebenberg

    I call it being present…she was neither present enough to know that the size of her umbrella was an issue or that she walking right into the issue she believed she was avoiding…getting drenched…be present, be aware, be considerate and mindful of the world around you! She was not…

    • urbanpaleochef

      Agreed, Carl, and you’re so right! I think the lesson here is to be present in your activities. And while I try to do that for all activities, it is extra important when what you’re doing interacts with other people. Don’t be absent, because we all hate it when other people are absent-minded in their actions!