Yes, woks are essential for stir-frying, but they can do so much more. Here’s a few of the many reasons I think a wok is a great kitchen tool, and a guide for how to buy (and care for) a new wok.
Do you have to use a wok for stir fry?
If you have a wok, use it, but don’t let the lack of a wok discourage you from making a stir-fry at home. … A sauté pan (which most of us already have at home) makes a good substitute for a wok; just heat a few tablespoons of vegetable oil in the pan and stir-fry as usual.
Why is a wok better for stir fry?
A wok is ideal for stir-frying; as the food is cooked, it’s pushed up to the sides of the wok while the remaining food is cooked on the bottom. A wok uses less oil than a conventional large skillet, and its high, sloping sides contain most of the splatter. … The cooking is very quick and requires attentive stirring.
Does a wok make a difference?
Cooking in a wok definitely makes a difference in the time needed to prepare a dish. Due to high heat retention, it’s much quicker to fry food in a wok compared to a frying pan. Woks also allow for a very even and cooking of the ingredients.
Is a stir fry healthy?
Stir-frying is a fast way to cook small pieces of food in a hot pan or wok. … In addition to being quick and easy, stir-frying is also healthy. It results in tender-crisp vegetables that retain more nutrients than if they were boiled. And since stir-frying requires only a small amount of oil, the fat content is low.
What is the difference between a stir fry pan and wok?
The main difference in the stir-fry pan is its generous flat bottom—a good couple of inches bigger than the older flat-bottom woks—and a depth of 3 or 4-inches, which beats out a traditional Western sauté pan.
What type of wok do Chinese restaurants use?
Carbon Steel woks are by far the most popular option, and for good reason. Chinese restaurants prefer them, and we prefer using them at home as well. Whether it is a “pow wok” with a single handle or a large wok with two metal handles, carbon steel is our top choice.
Should a wok be non stick?
She and other experts advised us that carbon-steel and lightweight cast-iron woks are the top choices for cooks. These materials transfer heat efficiently, so they sear foods more effectively than woks made of stainless steel or clad materials or woks coated in a nonstick material.
What is the best way to buy a wok?
Look for carbon steel woks that are at least 14-gauge—about two millimeters thick—which won’t bend when you press on the sides. Avoid nonstick woks at all costs. Most nonstick coatings cannot handle the high heat necessary for a proper stir-fry.
Can you use a wok for everything?
Dunlop says: “The wok is not only for stir-frying—it’s used for pretty much everything. … You can also use it for boiling and making stews, or even as a smoker—you cover the base of the wok with several layers of foil, and then you put some sugar and tea leaves and some flour.
What is the advantage of a wok?
The conical structure of the wok means heat is dispersed across more surface area than it would with a frying pan. This feature allows meat or vegetables to cook evenly and in just the one pan.
Is it worth buying a wok?
Yes, a wok is super useful. In addition to stir fries, it’s also great for soups, deep frying, and steaming due to its shape. Without a gas burner it is useless.
What are three important steps to a good stir fry?
Get Set to Stir-Fry in 3 Steps
- Step 1: Wok and Roll. A wok is the classic stir-fry pan. …
- Step 2: Gather Your Ingredients. The most important step in stir-frying is prepping all the ingredients before you fire up the wok. …
- Step 3: Fast and Furious Frying.
What’s the best oil to use in a wok?
peanut oil is considered the “best” oil to use in the wok because of its high smoking point. We buy large containers of it from our local asian market. I also use grapeseed oil because it also has good smoking point qualities, and you don’t need to use as much oil where you would with other varieties.
What vegetables do you stir fry first?
Stir-fry onions first, then add hard vegetables such as carrot and broccoli. Quick-cooking vegetables, such as snow peas, leafy greens and bean sprouts, should be added towards the end of cooking.