The Extra Ingredients David Chang Uses To Upgrade Vegetable Stir-Fry

Stir-fry is the perfect one-pan meal. The combination of vegetables like bell peppers, broccoli, carrots, meats, fish, or tofu sliced for bite-sized consumption and quick cooking make this a favorite dish to whip up on a busy weeknight. But if you really want to change things up with your stir-fry recipe, you may want to consider some of the extra ingredients David Chang adds to upgrade his vegetable version.

The Momofuku founder shared with Food & Wine that in Korea, a traditional stir-fry is not an elaborate mix of veggies and is instead made with just one vegetable like lotus root or potatoes. However, when he makes a vegetable stir-fry, Chang revealed he uses a rainbow of classic veggies along with a trinity of starchy vegetables that include Jerusalem artichokes, lotus root, and parsnips. And to give it a sweet bite, as seen in a recipe shared with Food & Wine, "The Next Thing You Eat" host uses some maple syrup to balance that umami taste from the soy sauce.

Hearty additions

The Jerusalem artichoke is similar to potatoes in how it's cooked, but its taste is sweet and nutty and Jerusalem artichokes are a great source for some added iron. This vegetable, which hails from the sunflower, adds a lovely texture to recipes and its crunch is perfect for a stir-try. Lotus root also adds a crunchy element but with style. After you have peeled away the skin of this starchy vegetable and sliced it up like a cucumber, you are left with thin pieces that look like flowers. Its taste is mild and perfect for sautéing in a sweet and savory maple syrup sauce.

To round out this trio, Chang adds parsnips to his stir-fry. Parsnips look a little like carrots but are sweeter and may remind your taste buds of a sweet potato. This starchy tuber takes a little longer to cook, but on the flip side, the prep is easy because you don't have to remove its skin. And speaking of carrots, Chang also uses this root veggie along with fingerling potatoes to create a hearty and delicious vegetable stir-fry that is perfect for those meatless Mondays or vegetarians in your life.