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Vegetable stir fry

Serves 4

The late cookbook author and California restaurateur Barbara Tropp, author of ''China Moon," mixed ginger, garlic, and fermented black beans in a hot and sour stir-fry. She blanched all the vegetables separately before they went into the wok, but you can also simmer the vegetables in the black bean mixture (above), which saves time.

1 tablespoon peanut oil
1 2-inch piece fresh ginger, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
4 tablespoons Chinese black beans, chopped
3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
4 carrots, thickly sliced
3 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1 cup chicken stock
12button mushrooms, stems removed and caps halved
3 zucchini, halved lengthwise and thickly sliced
1 butternut squash, peeled and thickly sliced
1/2 head broccoli, cut into florets
1/2 teaspoon salt
1. In a very large wok or Dutch oven, heat the oil over high heat and when it is very hot, add the ginger, garlic, beans, and crushed pepper. Stir-fry for 30 seconds.

2. Add the carrots and cook, stirring, for 30 seconds more. Pour in the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, and 1/2 cup of stock. Cover the pan, and cook the carrots for 5 minutes or until they are almost tender.

3. Add the mushrooms, zucchini, squash, broccoli, salt, and remaining 1/2 cup stock to the pan. Stir thoroughly. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring several times, or until all the vegetables are tender.

Adapted from ''China Moon"

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