Friday, 9 March 2012

Mmmm Western Chinese Food Part 2

            So here I set out to finish the buffet I have started. This is sort of a two fer. A lot of the same ingredients are used here and only some small changes in the cooking process. This comes again from my memory of eating Chinese takeout with my family. It will never fail to bring a smile to my face remembering my lovely Grand struggling to pronounce the name of the restaurant and my Gramps, I am pretty sure on purpose, pronouncing it wrong just to make her feel like it was right. The smiling continues as I as a very determined young man trying to teach Grand how to use chopsticks. It never worked but she tried her best. So these two recipes taste how I remember eating that food with my family so I hope you dig them.

            Okay so the cooking method is pretty much the same for both of these variations there is however a slight difference: for the ginger beef you want to use more oil in the initial cooking of the meat, this is going to give your meat a little bit more of a crunchy coating which is closer to how I remember eating ginger beef. If you have access to a deep fryer you can actually batter and fry your beef if you like but the method below works good enough for me. You can also mix up your proteins here if you like. If you feel like you have too many beef dishes sub in chicken or pork. All of these recipes will stand up to a swap in protein. So give them a go and serve with some simple rice. Your buffet at home is now complete. Grab some sticks and get at it.

Ginger Beef to the tune of American Slang by Gaslight Anthem

1 onion sliced
1 8-10oz steak cut into strips, I tend to go with middle of the road steak here; please do not chop up a piece of fillet for this recipe. A moderately priced piece of sirloin will serve you fine.
½ cup flour
Salt and pepper
¼ cup of soy sauce
¼ cup of water
3 tbsp honey
4 tbsp of freshly grated ginger, I go heavy on the ginger so do this to your taste.
1 tbsp rice wine vinegar, you can use cider or any wine vinegar if you don’t have rice wine.
6 tbsp oil, I use sesame but whatever you have will work

-Mix flour, salt and pepper in a bowl add your beef and dredge completely.

-Heat the oil in a large skillet over high heat. Add your beef and give it a quick and complete sear.

-While your beef is cooking whisk together soy sauce, water, honey, ginger and vinegar and put aside.

-Once your beef is seared off drain off the excess oil left in the pan, reduce the heat to medium and then add your onion. Let your onion cook down for a little bit and then add your liquid.

-Let your liquid cook down and thicken and then you are done.

The last of the recipes is one of my favourites. It adds a little bit of earthiness to your meal and is simply super tasty.

Beef and Shrimp in Black Pepper Sauce to the tune of Blackout by The Dropkick Murphys

1 onion sliced
1 steak 8-10 oz
6 mushrooms, I use whatever wild mushrooms I can find, shitake mushrooms are my favourite for this one.
1 sliced bell pepper
½ lb of uncooked shelled and deveined shrimp 31/40 count
Salt and pepper
¼ cup of soy sauce
¼ cup of water
3 tbsp honey
1 clove of minced garlic
A whack of fresh cracked black pepper, I use a lot, but 1 tbsp is a minimum
1-2 tbsp of oil

-Season your beef with the salt and pepper.

-Heat your oil over high heat and sear off your beef. Reduce the heat to medium.

-Add in your onions and garlic and let them cook down and then add in your mushrooms.

-Whisk together all of the other ingredients and add to the pan. And let reduce.

-Add in your shrimp and bell pepper, they should take very little time to cook. The last five minutes of cooking should be about right.

-Let the liquid reduce a little more until it becomes a thick and wonderfully gooey sauce.

The buffet is now complete. Sit down with some friends and enjoy.

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