I have a nicely seasoned carbon steel wok and I've been trying to do stir fry's with some decent success. But I've never got that sizzle, you know the really nice TZZZ!!! when I put the meat in the wok - I've been cooking on medium high because I've been afraid to set the house on fire.
I was looking at these videos today on youtube for stir fry technique:
Between these two videos and what I've read one of the key aspects of stir fry is to get the wok HOT HOT HOT! I noticed in the video the two chefs had plenty of time after adding in the oil. So I did a little experiment today.
I heated my wok on high until it stopped smoking. I added oil to see how much time I had.
In the time the two chefs had to add oil, swirl it, let it smoke, and add the meat, peanut oil caught on fire for me. I tried a second brand of peanut oil. It smoked fully in less than a second and I removed it from heat. I tried sunflower oil, and even though I removed it from heat about a second after adding it, it caught fire. The best I had was plain ol' vegetable oil. It acted much more like the grapeseed oil in the videos... had a little time before smoking and I removed from heat after about five seconds. Based on the amount of smoke I had, I'm guess I was 1 or 2 seconds away from setting it on fire.
I seriously doubt my kitchen range is hotter than those guys' stoves. Should I stick to grape seed oil, or just cook on medium high? I gotta feel that there are people out there with hotter stoves that used peanut oil.
Hoping for some good advice