that's forking good

adventures in a culinary neophyte's kitchen

sweet & spicy beef stir fry

Posted by culinaryneophyte on April 7, 2012

Ugh. I hate how long it’s been since my last post. For as little time as I’ve had to cook lately, I’ve had even less time to write. The sparse free time I’ve had has been devoted to Cupcake Smash entry development. I can’t yet reveal what I’ll be serving, but I will tell you there’s been an awful lot of bacon and booze involved; those are two staples of the PYT menu, after all.

One of the few meals I’ve cranked out lately was this awesome sweet and spicy beef stir fry (adapted from evil shenanigans). I toned back some of the heat because I’ve often turned perfectly good Asian meals inedible with heavy handed spice, but feel free to kick up a notch; I just enjoyed the sweet side of this dish with just a pinch of spice.

MARINADE
♦1 lb. beef round steak
♦1/3 c. honey
♦2 tbs. soy sauce
♦2 tbs. cooking sherry
♦1 tbs. minced ginger
♦1 tbs. oyster sauce
♦1/2 tbs. sriracha
♦2 tbs. orange juice
♦1/4 tsp. sesame oil

Slice beef into thin strips. Combine all other ingredients in a medium bowl. Add strips to bowl, and coat and massage with marinade. Cover with plastic wrap and set in fridge. Ideally, you’d like this to marinate for two hours, but I’m impatient and planned my meal poorly, so I let it marinate for only 45 minutes. The flavor still came through, so short cuts are permitted.

♦2 tbs. vegetable oil
1/2 small onion, chopped
1 carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks
1 tsp. minced garlic
1/2 tbs. ginger
1/2 lb. snow peas
2 tsp. soy sauce
2 c. white rice

Once beef is nearing end of marinating, heat 1 tbs. vegetable oil in a wok or large skillet over medium heat. Add half the beef to hot oil and sear for 30 seconds. Stir and continue to brown for about 1 minute. Remove beef and place in a small bowl. Add remaining beef and cook until brown. Return first batch of beef to skillet and turn to high heat. Cook about three minutes until beef begins to caramelize. Remove and place in bowl.

Wash skillet and return to medium-high heat. Add remaining vegetable oil, then add carrots and onions. Cook until softened, then add ginger and garlic, and cook for 30 seconds. Add snow peas and soy sauce, and cook for two minutes – until softened.  Add the beef to skillet and toss. Serve over steamed white rice.

Total time? Hour and a half (including marinating — longer if you’re patient and want even stronger flavor).
Cost? $3 beef, less than $1 for carrot and snow peas, $2.69 oyster sauce, $3.29 cooking sherry, $2.50 orange juice.
Overall success relative to expectations? 9 out of 10. I absolutely loved this meal. I thought my inability to wait two hours for marinating would ruin the flavor, but the flavor was fantastic. One serving was satisfying without making you feel overly full, and it kept well as leftovers. Definitely a tasty and relatively healthy weeknight meal that I’d highly recommend.

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