Bao Stir Fry Technique
In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the bao technique of stir-frying on a high flame was typical of cuisine from the northern Chinese province of Shandong. The wok is first heated to a dull red glow over a high fire. A larger amount of cooking fat with a high smoke point, such as refined plant oils, is added to the heated wok along with seasonings and the main ingredients, which are cut into smaller pieces to aid in cooking. The food is continually tossed, stopping only to add other ingredients such as broths, vegetables, or more seasonings. Because of the high heat, bao is ideal for small amounts of food that cook quickly, so the juices do not flow out of the items. When the food is cooked it is poured and ladled out of the wok. The wok must then be quickly rinsed to prevent food residues from charring and burning to the wok bottom because of residual heat.