Friday, 23 May 2008

Szechuan Stir-Fry Beef

I had some beef stir-fry strips defrosted for dinner tonight but I didn't really know what to do with them. After my massive effort at organising my bookmarks on AND going through all my magazines looking for the chilli chicken recipe AND making an Excel spreadsheet of meals that catch my eye and that I want to try soon and sharing it on Google Docs, I was foiled by the fact that most of the meals tend to be chicken or pasta. We don't eat red meat all that often.

DD asked for Spicy Szechuan Beef, but with the stir-fry strips in place of mince. I wasn't too excited about this idea as I find that particular recipe to be very thick, heavy and gluggy. He did agree to let me have a browse of some websites and even helped by reading over some recipes. In the end, he liked the look of another Szechuan themed recipe using stir-fry beef.

This recipe for Szechuan Stir-Fry Beef comes from Recipezaar and is so simple! I read through the recipe and did the first step (make the sauce) and then realised that all I had to do after that was to cook the beef. I hadn't even started to cook the rice yet. I had a brief pause while I put the rice on and then started stir-frying and while I stir-fried I blanched some snow peas. It took less than ten minutes.

The flavour in this dish is incredible (hehe I just looked at the recipe again and one of the reviews says the exact same thing). It's true though. It's lovely and spicy and has a beautiful rounded flavour which I think comes from the dry sherry. I make my own chilli powder as I haven't seen it around in stores, and mine is a little tamer than the chilli powder recipe recommends - I cut out a bit of cayenne - so I would imagine that it would be quite a spicy dish using true chilli powder. If you aren't a fan of spicy heat, I'd halve the amount of chilli powder.

Szechuan Stir-Fry Beef
from Mille on Recipezaar

500g beef stir fry strips
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup dry sherry
2 tbs water
2 tsp cornflour
2 tsp ginger, peeled and minced
1/2 tsp crushed chilli flakes
1/2 tsp pepper
1 tsp chilli powder
1 tbs vegetable oil
2 tsp minced garlic

In a small bowl, mix all ingredients from the soy sauce to the chilli powder and mix until smooth.

Heat the oil in a frypan. Add garlic and beef strips and stir fry for 3-4 minutes.

Stir in the sauce and continue stirring until the sauce has lightly thickened and is bubbly.

Serve with steamed rice and snow peas.

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