The stir-frying procedure requires high heat and the tossing and stirring of ingredients in a large pan to guarantee fast cooking. A wok is the traditional type of pan to use for stir-frying because it has deep tapered sides which permits food to be stirred and tossed easily. If a wok is not available, a deep heavy skillet works very well for stir-frying and nonstick pans are also easy to use. Wood or metal utensils should be used to stir the food. Plastic utensils should be avoided because they can melt. Each and every one of the ingredients should be prepared and within reach before the stir-fry process can commence. All vegetables should be chopped and ready to go. Herbs and spices and any liquid ingredients should be measured before beginning. It is helpful to put the ingredients in small bowls so that all is prepared. The beef for stir-fry recipes should be cut into small strips and should have very little fat. The small strips will guarantee that the meat will cook carefully, even when it is simply cooked for a short time.