The best-known method in Chinese cookery, stir-frying is simply frying food over high heat with continuous tossing and stirring.
A small amount of oil is added to the wok or pan and must be properly heated to a high temperature before adding other ingredients. The quick cooking in hot oil helps seal in the flavors of the ingredients.
The sequence of adding ingredients is important to achieve the crisp texture and flavor that is essential.
Items requiring a longer cooking time should be added to the hot oil before those requiring less cooking time, in descending order of delicacy. Cut foods should be of uniform size and shape so they will cook evenly.
If necessary, add a couple tablespoons of stock or water if any ingredients become dry or sticky. Stir-frying takes relatively little cooking time, should be done at the last minute, and served piping hot.