Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wok Wednesdays: Stir-Fried Beef with Broccoli

Beef and Broccoli may have been one of the first dishes I ordered when dining at Diamond Head Restaurant, one of the two local Chinese restaurant in Salisbury, MD, back in the early 80s.  Beef and Broccoli = Benign.  Which is why this is listed on the last page of their menu (specifically, "American Menu") at the local Taste of China in Charlottesville, VA, present day. 

Taste of China is one of the more authentic restaurants I've eaten outside of NYC, San Francisco and Vancouver, thanks to the elusive Peter Chang, known in the southeast coast for Sichuan cuisine. I have not ordered Beef and Broccoli since 1985, but I was excited to try this recipe since it's one vegetable the kids would eat seven days a week. And it called for fermented black beans, an ingredient I've been wanting to have in my tool box since my Seattle friend,  Lisa Wong introduced me to them in the early 90s.  Knowing this, I knew this recipe was already going to have more depth in flavor!

Main ingredients are lean flank steak, garlic, ginger, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, dark soy sauce, rice wine, sesame oil, onions, fermented black beans and cornstarch. I used both red and white onions for color. 

Fermented black beans are tricky to find in the Asian grocery since there is a similar item called black bean sauce in a jar (paste form) which is something different. Then, the same ingredient is also called fermented soy beans, found in a vacuum sealed plastic bag. I found this on the bottom aisle, below the dried noodle section.  Who would have thunk?  Oh, I did add extra black beans for good measure. I left some pieces whole.
First, the strips of flank steak along with the sauces, aromatics,cornstarch and sesame oil are mixed in a bowl.

Then, quickly seared...

Separately, stir fry the onions...

In the last minute, meat and the blanched broccoli are stir-fried together.

I would absolutely make this recipe again. It's a healthy dish with our favorite vegetable that the entire family enjoyed!

The rich, dark hoisin sauce and fermented black beans gave much depth in flavor to this all time favorite dish.

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