Beef Broccoli Stir-fry西兰花炒牛肉xī lán huā chǎo niú ròu

There are a few key steps to make an authentic, tender, restaurant-style beef broccoli stir-fry. You will need tenderize and marinate the beef, pre-cook the broccoli, sear the beef then combine beef and broccoli with the cooking sauce.

A little secret to tenderizing the beef is hydrating the meat with a bit of water and adding a small amount of baking soda. You need a good 30 minutes for the beef to sit and tenderize. After tenderizing the meat, marinating it in some oil, oyster sauce, and cornstarch gives the beef that extra soft and velvety texture you find in Chinese restaurants.

Beef and marinade

  • 450g/1 pound                  sirloin beef steak (sliced 1/4 inch thick)
  • 1/4 teaspoon                   baking soda (optional),小苏打
  • 3 tablespoons                  water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons               cornstarch淀粉
  • 2 teaspoons                     vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon                                  oyster sauce蚝油

Stir-fry sauce

  • 1 1/2 teaspoons               white sugar 
  • 1/4 teaspoon                   white peppercorn powder白胡椒粉
  • 1 and half tablespoons      corn starch
  • 2/3 cup                            chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons            light soy sauce生抽
  • 1 teaspoon                                  dark soy sauce 老抽
  • 1 tablespoon                   oyster sauce蚝油
  • 1/2 teaspoon                   sesame oil香油
  • 1 tablespoon       Chinese cooking wine

For the rest of the dish

  • 4 tablespoon cooking oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ½ yellow onion, sliced
  • 2 cups  broccoli florets(200g)西兰花

In a bowl, add the sliced beef, ¼ teaspoon baking soda, and 3 tablespoons water (if you don’t want your beef tenderized too much, skip the baking soda). Massage the beef with your hands until all the liquid is absorbed. Mix in 1 ½ teaspoons cornstarch, 2 teaspoons oil, and 1 teaspoon oyster sauce, and set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes.

Make the stir-fry sauce mixture by mixing together the chicken stock, sugar, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, white pepper and Chinese cooking wine. Set aside.

Let’s pre-cook the broccoli. If you use microwave, simple place your broccoli florets in a bowl. Push the ‘fresh vegetable’ function. Or you blanch the broccoli – bring 6 cups of water to a boil and blanch your broccoli for 30 to 60 seconds Drain and set aside. Either method, you will want your broccoli crunchy. Do not over cook it.

Heat your wok over medium high heat. Add 4 tablespoons oil and sear the beef on both sides until browned (this should only take 2-3 minutes). Cook the beef to rare. Turn off the heat, remove the beef from the wok, and set aside. Do not overcook the beef as the beef will be returned to wok later.

Set the same wok over medium heat.  Add into minced garlic and cook for 1 minute or so. Add into sliced yellow onions. Cook for another 2 minutes.

Next, add in the stir-fry sauce you made earlier. Stir the sauce around the sides of the wok to deglaze it (all those nice bits from stir-frying the beef should be absorbed into the sauce). Bring the sauce to a simmer.

Toss in seared beef and blanched broccoli. Mix everything together over medium heat for a couple of minutes until the sauce coats the beef and broccoli. Beef now shall be cooked to medium to well done and broccoli shall be still crunchy. Remove it from the stove and plate it. Serve with plenty of steamed rice!

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