Thursday 9 May 2013

Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry in Garlic Ginger Sauce

Every time I plan to share a stir fry recipe, I end up changing my mind.  I tell myself that they're so simple no one needs instructions from me on how to put one together.

But we each make our stir fries a little differently,

And many people - like me - don't own woks or other specially designed equipment in which to make them,

So - no matter how simple it may seem to me - I'm sharing a stir fry recipe today.

I often have these ingredients on hand, so some variation of this dish makes a frequent appearance on our dinner table.  It's a quick, easy meal, and a great way to use up bits and bobs from the vegetable crisper.  You can add in any vegetables you like and the quantities are easily adjusted.

To make Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry in Garlic Ginger Sauce, you'll need:

  • 1-1/2 teaspoons cooking oil (I use sunflower oil)
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 cup sliced onion
  • 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger (to taste)
  • 3 cups broccoli florets
  • 1 cup sliced carrot
  • 1 cup red pepper cut into strips
  • 2 -1/2 cups beef stock
  • 8 ounces leftover cooked steak, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 2 Tablespoons cornstarch
  • salt and pepper to taste

Heat the oils in a large, deep pot (I use a 6 quart Dutch Oven) until they are hot enough that the surface of the oil begins to ripple.  

Add in the onion and cook it, stirring constantly, until it's tender.

Add in the garlic and ginger and cook, stirring constantly, for a few seconds more.

Add in the broccoli florets, carrot, and red pepper.  Stir to distribute the onion, garlic, and ginger through the vegetables.

Add in 2 cups of the beef stock and bring it to a boil.  

Cook the vegetables until they're tender crisp.  About half of the stock will have evaporated.

Add in the beef and stir it through the ingredients.  

Continue cooking until the beef is heated through.  This won't take more than a minute or so.

While the beef is heating through, combine the rest of the beef stock with the soy sauce and cornstarch, stirring until the cornstarch is dissolved.

Add the cornstarch-beef stock slurry to the stir fry and stir it through until the sauce is thickened.  

If the sauce gets too thick, add a little more stock to the pot to thin it down.

Taste the finished dish and adjust the seasoning, adding salt and pepper if required.

Serve your beef vegetable stir fry immediately, over rice or noodles.  (I served this one over Secret Vegetable Ramen.)

If you have leftovers, you can reheat them in the microwave or you can use them to make a tasty soup.  

To make soup, cut the stir fry into smaller pieces, then stir in enough beef stock to thin it to the consistency you desire.  

Mix in a little more grated ginger.

Heat it to a boil, then stir in some cooked rice or noodles.  

I like to spice beef stir fry soup up a bit, so I serve sriracha sauce on the side.  

Cook's notes:
  • If you don't have leftover cooked steak, an equivalent amount of thinly sliced uncooked beef can be used.  The uncooked beef should be the first ingredient you add to the pot, stirring until it's almost cooked through before continuing on with the recipe.
  • Other proteins may be substituted for the beef.  If you choose to use poultry or pork, substitute chicken or vegetable stock for the beef stock called for in the recipe.  You can make a vegan version of this dish with marinated firm tofu and vegetable stock.