Recipe by Cranky Ex-Chef
Yeah, I know "gaijin" is Japanese and this recipe is an American version of Chinese food. Irony intended. I like this recipe because it is fresh and flavorful and the ingredients are readily available at almost any grocery store. The keys to success here are high heat, a short cooking time (which you ensure by slicing the steak thin-thin-thin!), and having a receiving dish ready to take the sauted vegetables when they are JUST cooked so they stay crisp and don't get mushy. Most recipes for beef and broccoli include ginger. I like ginger when I like ginger, but don't particularly care for it in this meal. If you're a fan of it in your beef and broccoli, I'd recommend a teaspoon of ground or 1/2 teaspoon fresh added with the garlic during the initial saute. Other additions might include sliced carrots, snow peas, water chestnuts, or bean sprouts. Serve with hot plain or fried rice, and enjoy!
- 1 lb steak, round steak or 1 lb chuck steaks or 1 lb skirt steak
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch, divided into 2 T and 1 T portions
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided into 2- 1 T portions (peanut or canola)
- 1⁄2 cup water or 1⁄2 cup beef broth
- 2 minced garlic cloves or 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 4 cups broccoli florets
- 1 yellow onion, cut in half and sliced into 1/8-inch half rings
- 1⁄3 cup soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
Directions See How It's Made
- Slice steak into pieces 1" wide x 3" long x 1/8" thick. If you are having difficulty getting the steak sliced thin enough, place it in the freezer for 30-60 minutes, long enough to firm the meat for easy slicing but not long enough to freeze solid. Place sliced meat in a wide dish and sprinkle the 2 tablespoon portion of cornstarch on the steak, tossing it until the meat is evenly coated.
- In a bowl, combine the soy sauce, brown sugar, and the 1 tablespoon portion of soy sauce with a fork. The cornstarch will settle to the bottom before you've used this solution so leave the fork in the bowl so you can re-incorporate it right before adding to the pan.
- Heat a large skillet, wok, or dutch oven over medium-high to high heat. When the pan is hot add the first tablespoon of vegetable oil, swirl to coat the bottom of the pan, and immediately add the meat, separating the pieces so they form a single layer on the bottom of the pan. Sear for 3-4 minutes, tossing to keep the meat from burning to the bottom of the pan. When the meat has browned and is cooked to your desired doneness, remove from the pan and put on the receiving dish.
- Add the second tablespoon of vegetable oil, swirl to coat the bottom, and add the garlic, onion, and broccoli. Toss and stir the vegetables constantly until the broccoli has turned from a dull green to a bright, healthy, happy green. Remove the vegetables immediately to the receiving dish.
- Stir the cornstarch-soy-cornstarch mixture until the cornstarch is well-incorporated and add to the pan. Add the water or beef broth as well and stir (scraping the bottom of the pan to release and dissolve any flavor crystals from your earlier saute efforts) until the mixture boils and thickens. Return the cooked vegetables and steak to the pan, toss to coat with the sauce and to re-heat, and then remove from the pan to the receiving dish.
- Serve and enjoy with rice.