Friday, February 26, 2010

Marinated Beef with Vegetables

You know those inexpensive cookbooks that don't really have an author (just a publishing company) that they sell in the sale sections at bookstore or in the front of stores like Ross, TJ Maxx and Marshalls? Well, somehow I have acquired several of those over the years. Some were gifts, some were impulse buys because two dollars for any book is worth it to me. At any rate, I've always been afraid to cook from them because I don't trust that anyone has ever tested these recipes. Let me know if you know anything about that. Paragon Books puts out several different kinds of these books and for Christmas one year J gave me one called Chinese Cooking: A collection of easy and elegant recipes. This Christmas I got a wok and J requested that I make a stir-fry once a week. So I decided what better way to get so use out of this book than to try to cook all the recipes that we would actually eat. The idea of cooking my way through an entire cookbook is very intriguing, but there are is rarely a book in which every single recipe sounds like something I would like. I'm not picky anymore but the few things I know I don't like I stay away from. Why waste calories on something you don't really want to eat? Going to weight watchers has definitely instilled this philosophy in me. This works only for things that aren't good for you of course. The healthy guidelines are good for you even if you don't really want to eat your vegetables. I guess the key is making the vegetables something you that you want to eat. This particular recipe includes lots of vegetables. I personally thought the recipe was a little bland but I like my Asian food to have some kick to it. J added a little hoisin or you could add some sriracha if you wanted something with a little more flavor.

Marinated Beef with Vegetables (adapted from Chinese Cooking)

1 tbsp sherry
1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1/2 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tsp sugar
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tsp sesame oil

1/2 pound thinly sliced beef
1 tbsp sesame oil
1/2 tbsp cornstarch
1/2 tbsp soy sauce
2 crowns broccoli, cut into florets
2 carrots, julienned
2 cups sugar snap peas
1/2 cup fat free beef broth
1 bag baby spinach
1/2 cup white rice, cooked according to package

  1. Combine ingredients for marinade, add beef and cover. Let marinade 30 min and remove beef.
  2. Heat half the oil in the wok at high heat. Stir-fry beef until medium rare and remove from pan.
  3. Combine cornstarch and soy sauce. Add remaining oil to wok and add broccoli, carrots, and peas and stir-fry 2 minutes.
  4. Add stock and let vegetable steam 2 minutes (covering if possible).
  5. Add spinach, beef and cornstarch mixture. Cook to thicken and serve over rice.

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