I saved the best for last. As I understand it, Eric absolutely loved the sauce from the broccoli. Luckily for him, that same sauce (with small variations) is used on just about any vegetable or meat you could care to cook!
Basically, the Chinese kitchen uses a basic three-ingredient sauce, with three other variable ingredients, in different quantities, on everything.
Their very own trinity of ingredients: soy sauce, corn starch, sugar.
If you would like your sauce a little richer, add a little oyster sauce. If you'd like it to be a little more pungent, add some green onion. If it needs a little kick, try some fresh ginger.
For my broccoli:
In a skillet, heat up 1 tbs. oil and 3 tsp minced garlic. Before the garlic browns, add about four handfuls of chopped broccoli and 3/4 cup water. Cover and steam until tender, about 8 minutes.
In a small bowl, mix1 heaping tsp. cornstarch, 2 tsp soy sauce and 2 tsp sugar. Add just enough water to be able to stir the mixture together.
When the broccoli is done, remove the lid and make a little "clearing" in the middle of the pan. (There should still be about 1/4 inch water in the bottom of the pan.) Add your bowl of sauce and stir into the water. Let this come to a boil. When the sauce has thickened, you're ready to serve! Taste it - oyster sauce, sugar or soy sauce can still be added at this point. If it is not thick enough, you can add more cornstarch, but be sure to mix it into a little cold water before adding it to the pan. Otherwise, you'll get little cornstarch dumplings, and nobody likes that!
When cooking Chinese food, green onions should be chopped (greens and all) and added with the final seasoning. Ginger should be added in slices (one or two will be sufficient, about 2 mm across, and whacked with a knife to release the juice) with the garlic, into the heating oil. These slices can be removed before serving - most people don't like biting into a slice of ginger with their chicken!