Chicken Stir-Fry With Yams

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Dear Jess,

The summer (as always) is flying by. I can’t believe we’re into August already!

As you have likely noticed, I’m having a chicken and ginger love affair. This recipe has become a quick comfort food for me! If you don’t like hoisin, just use soy sauce instead. The yams (or sweet potato in my case) make this dish addictive!

Chicken Stir-fry with Yams
adapted from

2 Tbsp Sesame oil, divided (olive oil will work too, though now with the same flavour)
2 yams (I used a large sweet potato), peeled, cut crosswise into 1/3 inch thick rounds then cut into 1/3 inch wide strips
1 medium size red onion, cut lengthwise into 1/3 inch thick slices
2-3 Tbsp peeled, grated fresh ginger
3 cloves garlic, minced
Meat from one cooked chicken
4 cups 1/3 inch thick strips sliced cabbage (about 1/4-1/2 head)
1 Tbsp Hoisin sauce
2 Tbsp soy sauce (low sodium)
Salt and pepper to taste

Heat 1 Tbsp Sesame oil in a large skillet. Add yams and onion. Cook, covered, for 12 minutes (or until tender), stirring occasionally. I had a little measuring cup of water close at hand, so if it started to burn, I would add a bit.

Add Ginger and Garlic. Cook for 2-3 minutes. Add chicken and cabbage. Cook for about 5 minutes (or until cabbage is at desired texture. I like my cabbage just a tad bit still crunchy.)

Add Hoisin sauce (add more if desired), soy sauce and salt and pepper. Stir until heated through and remove from heat.

I served this atop a bid of vermicelli noodles. It would go great with rice, or any other stir-fry-friendly noodle.


Highlands Bar & Grill in Birmingham was named America’s most Outstanding Restaurant at the James Beard Foundation Awards in Chicago on Monday night. Highlands pastry chef Dolester Miles was also named best in the country, making the restaurant the runaway winner at the awards. A panel of chefs, restaurateurs, and food journalists gave chef and owner Frank Stitt’s modern Southern restaurant the honors. The other big winner of the night was Seattle’s Edouardo Jordan, whose JuneBaby was named best new restaurant in America; he was also named Best Chef Northwest for his restaurant, Salare. “People always talk about Portland [Oregon] as the Pacific Northwest restaurant city,” said Jordan. “But they’re like the cool kid with a new name every season. Seattle is showing we are an ongoing force.” He doesn’t credit the rise of Inc. for his restaurants’s successes, although owner Jeff Bezos has dined at Salare. “Seattle has always had big companies—Boeing, Microsoft. They come in and eat, but it’s the people in the city who are making it happen. They’re more engaged than anyone gives them credit for.” The James Beard Foundation Awards recognize restaurants, wine programs, chefs, designers, restaurateurs, cookbook authors, and journalists from around the country. The awards, established in 1990, have recognized industry leaders such as Union Square Hospitality Group’s Danny Meyer and Daniel Humm and Will Guidara of Eleven Madison Park. While it may not have been a good year for such famed restaurant cities as New York and San Francisco (which won only two chef and beverage awards, including Best Service at Zuni, and the Best Chef West winner Dominique Crenn), it was a very good year for women. Gabrielle Hamilton of Prune in New York was named Outstanding Chef in the U.S, and Missy Robbins of Lilia in Brooklyn was named Best Chef New York. Forty percent of this year’s nominees were female. Women won many of the major awards, including Caroline Styne, who was named Outstanding Restaurateur for Lucques Group in Los Angeles. Forty percent of the winners of the regional chef awards were women; last year, that number was 30 percent. For the first time, voters were encouraged to consider qualities beyond food, wine, and ambiance, including respect and integrity. This follows accusations of sexual harassment against such past Beard winners as Mario Batali and John Besh.

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