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Let’s be honest. Not all stir-fries are created equal. There are two kinds, really. There is the have-to-use-up-the-vegetables kind, where you throw everything in the fridge into a wok, slightly randomly add asianesque condiments, and eat it five minutes later. That definitely has merits, and I make it a lot. Then there is the second kind, where the flavours are balanced, and vegetables and colours complement each other, where you eat it and go, “wow, that’s a stir-fry”.

This dish is a perfect balance between speed (15-20 minutes) and flavour. The noodles give it substance, while the combination of peas, pineapple and cashews is a wonderful mix of the fresh, sweet and salty. My favourite bit is definitely the mint. It gives a fragrant undertone to the standard sweet-salty tastes that makes this very memorable. Put it this way. I said wow.

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Pineapple and Pea Stir Fry, with Mint (serves 3)

2 small red onions

3 cloves garlic, crushed

1 knob ginger, minced

1/2 head broccoli, broken into florrets

1 cup pineapple pieces

1small handful snow peas, cut into diagonal slices

3/4 cup peas, fresh or frozen

1/3 cup salted whole cashew nuts

1 Tablepoon fresh mint, torn into pieces

2 Tablespoons sweet chili sauce

4 Tablespoons tamari/soy sauce

3 pasta nests of egg pasta (could also use rice noodles, vermicelli etc.)

Splash of oil for frying

Cook the pasta in a saucepan of water until al dente (cooked but still firm). While doing this, slice the onions into fine half rings, and fry in a small amount of oil.

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Add the garlic and ginger, and cook until fragrant.

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Add the broccoli, and cook for a few minutes, then add the pineapple, cashew nuts, peas and snow peas.

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Once the pasta is cooked, drain and chop into short lengths. Add to the vegetable mixture and continue to cook, adding the mint, soy sauce and sweet chili sauce. Cook until the broccoli is cooked but still firm, and serve immediately.

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