This week was my first attempt at actually doing my learning project, and it went great. I found a great beginner chicken stir-fry video by a Youtuber that goes by the name of “Pro Home Cooks” (full video below). This video was great because he assumes that the viewers are not very experienced in the kitchen, and because of this, he took the time to fully explain everything he was doing along the way. I have tried to use YouTube videos before to get more experienced in the kitchen, but a lot of videos do not take the time to fully explain what they are doing and why. This can be frustrating when you are like me and are not very experienced in the kitchen.
The first step in the process was to fry the chicken. I have fried chicken before, but it pales in comparison to last night’s result. The best tip I got from this video was how to properly fry chicken. Before watching this video, I would spray some pam on the pan and then salt and pepper it as it was cooking, and doing it like this made it hard to get that nice crispy, brown outside without overcooking the inside. What you need to do is draw the moisture out of the chicken before you fry it so it does not boil the chicken, which you are not trying to do while frying it. Before cooking, you need to: remove the excess moisture with a paper towel; salt and pepper both sides, and then wait 10 to 15 minutes to allow the seasoning to draw out more moisture; wipe away the moisture again; then you are ready to fry. Also, instead of using pam like I usually do, I used canola oil as he instructed and it turned out much better.
Then it was time for the vegetables. Usually, I would have cut the vegetables and threw them into the frying pan as I went along, but I was instructed not to do this for a few reasons. 1) It increases the likelihood that the food will burn as you are not paying close enough attention and 2) Certain vegetables need more time to cook than others. So, I prepped all my vegetables before I started frying. It was then time to all it all together. I put my mushrooms and onions on first as those need the most time; after a few minutes I added in broccoli, red pepper, garlic, ginger, and broccoli; lastly, I added in the cut-up chicken and the spinach. To finish it off, I put it over rice, drizzled on some teriyaki sauce and sprinkled some crushed up peanuts on top.
I fed this meal to everyone in my household and I asked them to rate it. Here are the official ratings for learning project attempt #1:
Danica (my girlfriend): 9/10
Duane & Tammy (my girlfriend’s parents): 10/10
My rating: 8/10
Looks like I might have a hard time topping this first recipe. Thanks for reading!
Fantastic job, Branden! It looks like you are learning a lot through this project. I even learned a few tips by reading your post! I am going to try the advice you gave about chicken and veggies. You did a wonderful job of including photos of your experience and even embedding a YouTube video. Another way to enhance your writing is to connect your post to another classmate’s post. If there is someone else venturing into the world of cooking or baking with their Learning Project, you could make a connection and link their blog post as well. Great job this week!
I appreciate the advice! That is a good idea and is something I will definitely look into doing in the future.
I truly enjoyed your blog post and how you laid out the cooking process from start to finish to make it feel as though we were in the kitchen with you. I also have never heard about drawing out the moisture from chicken like that before, but it is a great tip and I am sure your readers along with yourself will highly benefit from it! I also loved that you included your girlfriend’s family as well as your own rating on the final product, that was such a fun aspect. Now you need to find and create a recipe that gets 10/10 from everyone!! I wish you the best of luck, stay safe and healthy!
Hey Branden! Your entry was so interesting and engaging to follow along with. I liked that you added pictures in throughout the process. I also liked that you provided the reader with tips that you learned throughout the recipe. The Youtube account that you used (Pro Home Cooks) sounds like an account I should subscribe to.
Can’t wait to see what you cook up next!
This looks amazing!!! I never thought to dry the chicken first, that’s a great advice. Also to prep the veggies before. My cooking style is to cut it all, throw it all together, and add my favorite spices haha…. I think my partner will appreciate your advice though to add one thing at a time! Your videos looks awesome, great resources! I follow videos by Jamie Oliver https://www.jamieoliver.com/ because he keeps things simple, it taste great, and there’s always room for creativity and flexibility. Hope you enjoy his website too!
Thanks for sharing it all, looking forward to your next blog!
Thanks for the comment and the recommendation! I am trying to find new and different resources to expand my learning so I will definitely keep the website you mentioned in mind!