Sunday, October 31, 2010

Chinese Beef with Broccoli

I'm trying to do a cheap grocery shopping week in preparation for Saturday's cooking extravaganza. I had some neglected broccoli (I can't seem to resist broccoli or cauliflower when it's cheap!) and leftover scallions sitting in the fridge and decided this recipe would be a good way to use up both. The recipe was a little fussy (stir-frying in batches so the beef browns instead of steams, cooking the broccoli separately first, marinating the beef for an hour). I also found the amount of oil excessive. This recipe is supposed to be a healthier alternative to deep-frying the beef, but it's still a lot of oil. I did not end up using the full 1/2 cup.

As far as changes go, I stuck to the recipe fairly well. I cheated and used pre-sliced fondue meat from Maison du Roti. My bunch of broccoli was less than 900 and I used 2 scallions instead of one. I also substituted rice noodles for rice (cooking them in the broccoli water to add a little extra flavour and save on time/pots). The key to this recipe is having everything ready before you start cooking. The end result is tasty ... although anything with oyster sauce, soy sauce, and rice wine would probably be tasty. Next time around I might try to find a way to make it quicker/easier and more of a weeknight meal. This serves 4 ... unless you go back for seconds.

One year ago today: Asparagus, Oka, Pine Nuts, and Lemon Pasta (Where has all the good Providence Oka gone? The last two times I've bought it, it's been sadly disappointing!)

Chinese Beef with Broccoli (adapted from Gourmet Today)

450g flank steak, cut in half and crosswise into 1/8 inch thick slices (or fondue meat)
1/4 cup soy sauce, divided
2 tbsp water
2 tbsp rice wine, divided
2 tsp sesame oil, divided
3 1/2 tsp cornstarch, divided
1 tbsp 2 tsp chopped garlic, divided
2 tsp sugar, divided
900g broccoli, cut into florets, stems peel and sliced
1/3 cup chicken stock
3 tbsp oyster sauce
1/2 cup peanut oil, divided (I used much less)
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 scallion, finely chopped
Serve with: white rice (or noodles)

1. Put steak in a bowl. Add 2 tbsp soy sauce, water, 1 tbsp rice wine, 1 tsp sesame oil, 2 tsp cornstarch, 2 tsp garlic, and 1 tsp sugar. Stir to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate at room temperature for 1 hour.
2. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Add broccoli and blanch until crisp-tender, 2 minutes. Drain, shock with cold water to stop the cooking.
3. In a small bowl, whisk together stock, oyster sauce, 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbsp rice wine, 1 tsp sesame oil, 1 tsp sugar, and 1 1/2 tsp cornstarch.
4. Drain beef in a colander, gently pressing on beef.
5. Heat a 14" flat bottomed wok over high heat. Pour 3 tbsp peanut oil down side and swirl to coat. Add 1/4 of beef, spreading it in one layer. Cook until it begins to brown, about 30 seconds. Stir-fry until meat is just browned, about 1 minute. Transfer to plate. Wipe wok and cook remaining 3 batches in same manner, adding 1 tbsp oil for each batch (wiping seemed too dangerous to me, so I just added more oil as needed).
6. Pour remaining 2 tbsp peanut oil on wok (I went lighter on this). Add ginger, scallions, and 1 tbsp garlic and stir-fry until golden, about 1 minute.
7. Add broccoli and stir-fry for 30 seconds.
8. Add beef an stock mixture and cook, stirring, until sauce boils and thickens, about 2 minutes.
9. Serve with rice or noodles.

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