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“This stir-fry is great as a vegetarian option for dinner or can be served as a side dish for 6 people. The toasted sesame seeds add a great finishing touch to the recipe. The exact constituents of the stir-fry can be varied according to what you like and what’s available, but the trio of beans, peppers and carrots is particularly attractive. Serves 3-4 as a vegetarian main course, 6 as a side dish.”

Ingredients Nutrition

  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced on the diagnonal 1/4in thick
  • 9 ounces French beans, topped and tailed, then halved crosswise
  • 1 -2 red pepper, deseeded and cut into shreds (around 12oz)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar or 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 thick slices fresh ginger, peeled and shredded
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds, for garnish (optional)
  • vegetable oil, to coat the pan well (around 1 - 2 tbs)
  • fresh cilantro, for garnish (optional)


  1. Assemble the carrots, beans and peppers in separate piles on individual plates for easy use once the stir-frying starts.
  2. Put the soy sauce and vinegar in one small bowl, the garlic and ginger in another, and the sesame oil in a third.
  3. Toast the sesame seeds in a small frying pan till lightly browned, and mix with a little soy sauce for extra flavour if you like.
  4. Heat a very large frying pan or wok over a high heat. Add enough oil to cover the bottom of the pan generously, then add the carrots and stir-fry vigorously, moving the veg non-stop, for 30 secs. Put in the beans and continue to fry for 2 minutes Now add the peppers and cook for another 2 minutes At this point you can stop stirring long enough to grind in plenty of black pepper.
  5. Now add the mushrooms and the garlic and ginger. Turn the heat down a little and stir-fry until the mushrooms are cooked al dente - 1 or 2 minutes.
  6. Pour in the soy and vinegar and mix thoroughly. Finally, add the sesame oil.
  7. Serve immediately straight from the pan or transfer to a large bowl, and garnish with cilantro and toasted sesame seeds if you wish. Serve with egg noodles or plain boiled rice.

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