Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Ginger Beef and Broccoli Stir Fry

I don't cook or eat beef.. usually.   I have hardly cooked beef in the last 4 years, but my husband gets beef when ever he orders Chinese take-away.   So I decided to do something special for him and make him his favorite beef stir fry at home. It's about time, right? :)  Well I could hardly wait to take these photos and dive into this stir fry myself... it was so good.  Now I know why he loves this combination so much.  The best part was this was so much healthier than the take away we usually get because I only used 2Tbs of canola oil in the entire dish.  Now he won't have to wait only for Chinese take-away to get a beef stir fry he can have a much healthier version at home.

1lb beef (good quality, no bones)
2 Tbs fresh ginger minced or grated
2 tsp fresh garlic minced or grated
red chili flakes to taste
4-6 cups of broccoli florets
optional vegetables:
1 red bell pepper sliced
1 medium onion chopped
1 can sliced water chestnuts drained
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 Tbs oyster sauce
2 Tbs Chinese rice wine or Sherry
1 Tbs rice vinegar
2 Tbs brown sugar
2 Tbs water

2 tbs cornstarch powder
2Tbs water

Cut broccoli florets and put in wok with 1-2Tbs of water to steam broccoli until slightly cooked...keep them still firm and crisp.  Remove broccoli from pan.  Add 2 Tbs of canola oil into wok and get it heated to a high temperature.  Add sliced beef and saute for a few minutes until beef starts to cook.

Tips on beef:  To get thin slices, place beef in freezer for 30-45 minutes so it firms up enough to slice easily. Remember to cut against the grain of the beef so it is tender.

Next add ginger, garlic and red chili flakes and stir fry for 1-2 minutes.  Then add the partially steamed broccoli, onion water chestnuts and bell pepper.

Note: Bell peppers, onion and water chestnuts do not need to be cooked long so they can keep their crisp texture.  If you decide to use firmer vegetables in the stir fry, you will want to partially cook them as well beforehand.

 Next add the prepared sauce and toss well with the beef and vegetables.  Note:  Taste the stir fry, you may need to add more soy sauce or sugar depending on your taste.  Remember the stir fry needs to be slightly on the saltier side because you are going to eat it with plain rice and that will mute the flavor of the salt and spice. Finally, mix the slurry of cornstarch and water.  When stir fry liquid is almost boiling add the slurry and mix well to thicken the sauce.  Serve hot with rice.  Enjoy.

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