April 13, 2007

Tangerine-Beef Stirfry

This is a recipe that I tested for Cook's Illustrated last night. It was the first recipe that I was a tester for, and it was delicous. A light tangerine oriental flavor. I served it over Jasmine rice, although next time I think I'll try brown...I think the dish would benefit from the heartier, nuttier flavor that brown rice lends. I hardly ever buy flank steak. For something that was considered "trash meat" 5 years ago, is now close to $9 a pound. But, I broke down and bought some for this recipe. I must say that I really enjoyed it, and will try working with it again in the future. I used more garlic than the recipe calls for, per usual. I also think the stir-fry could use a little more color, the addition of carrot might be nice. All-in-all it was a wonderful, easy, weeknight dinner. Jon and I both really enjoyed it!

Tangerine Stir-Fried Beef with Onions and Snow Peas
Serves 4

To make slicing the flank steak easier, freeze it for 20 to 30 minutes. If flank steak is unavailable, replace with sirloin tip steaks (also called flap meat) or blade steaks, trimming any excess fat and gristle before slicing thinly. If using blade steak start with a pound of meat in order to compensate for any loss during trimming. Serve this dish with rice. Orange can be used in place of tangerines. If available, substitute 1 teaspoon toasted and ground Sichuan peppercorns for the hot red pepper flakes.

4 tablespoons soy sauce
1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
12 ounces flank steak, cut into 2-inch-wide strips with the grain, then sliced across the grain into 1/8-inch-thick slices (see note above)
3/4 cup juice plus 1 teaspoon grated zest from 2 tangerines
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon cornstarch
3 medium garlic cloves, pressed through garlic press or minced (about 1 tablespoons)
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 tablespoon Chinese black bean sauce
1/4 - 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, halved and cut pole-to-pole into 3/8 to 1/2-inch wedges
10 ounces snow peas, ends trimmed
2 tablespoons water

1. Combine 2 tablespoons soy sauce and 1 teaspoon sugar in medium bowl. Add beef, toss well and marinate at least 10 minutes or up to 1 hour, stirring once. Meanwhile, whisk remaining 2 tablespoons soy sauce, remaining 1 tablespoon sugar, tangerine juice, sugar, sesame oil, and cornstarch in medium bowl. Combine tangerine zest, garlic, ginger, black bean sauce, red pepper flakes, and 1 teaspoon oil in small bowl.

2. Drain beef and discard liquid. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in 12-inch nonstick skillet over high heat until just smoking. Add half of beef to skillet in single layer, breaking up any clumps. Cook, without stirring, for 1 minute, then stir and continue to cook until beef is browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer beef to medium bowl. Heat 1 teaspoon oil in skillet, and repeat with remaining beef. Wipe out skillet using paper towels.

3. Add remaining tablespoon oil to now-empty skillet and heat until just smoking. Add onions and cook, stirring frequently until beginning to brown and soften, 3 to 5 minutes. Add snow peas and continue to cook until spotty brown, about 2 minutes longer. Add water and cook until vegetables are tender but still crisp, about 1 minute. Push vegetables to sides of skillet to clear center; add zest/garlic mixture to clearing and cook, mashing with spatula, until fragrant, 15 to 20 seconds. Stir to combine zest/garlic mixture with vegetables. Return beef and any accumulated juices to skillet and stir to combine. Whisk sauce to recombine, then add to skillet; cook, stirring constantly, until sauce is thickened and evenly distributed, about 30 seconds. Transfer to serving platter and serve.


Stick said...

I can attest that this was delicious. Savory yet slightly sweet at the same time. The tangerines really add a lot to the dish.

Amber said...

That looks wonderful! How fun to be a tester for C.I.

Joelen said...

Looks like a wonderful recipe - Thanks for posting!

DeborahSW said...

Tangerine - what an interesting ingredient, I don't think I've seen it in a stir fry before. Looks yummy! :)