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Stir-Fried Beef & Broccoli with Black Bean Sauce

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Serves 4

  • To learn more, read:
    Flex Your Meals
  • by Ivy Manning from Fine Cooking
    Issue 103

You won’t believe how good this Chinese take-out classic can be when you make it at home. It's easily adaptable to serve meat-lovers and vegetarians alike: see the variation below to serve one vegetarian, or check out the totally meatless version: Broccoli and Shitake Stir-Fry with Black Bean Garlic Sauce.

  • 11 oz. skirt or flank steak, sliced across the grain 1/4 inch thick
  • 1 Tbs. reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 small clove garlic, minced (1 tsp.)
  • 6 dried shiitake mushrooms, reconstituted in 1 cup boiling water for 20 minutes
  • 1/4 cup black bean garlic sauce (such as Lee Kum Kee brand)
  • 2 Tbs. Shaoxing wine (Chinese rice wine) or dry sherry
  • 1 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 2 tsp. Asian chile sauce or paste
  • 2 Tbs. vegetable oil
  • 4 tsp. minced fresh ginger
  • 2 lb. broccoli, crowns cut into florets, stems peeled and thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup toasted cashews, coarsely chopped

Combine the steak, soy sauce, and garlic in a small bowl and set aside.

Drain the mushrooms, reserving 2/3 cup of the soaking liquid. Discard the stems and thinly slice the caps. In a small bowl, combine the reserved mushroom soaking liquid and the black bean sauce, wine, cornstarch, and chile sauce. Stir to dissolve the cornstarch and set aside. Heat 1 Tbs. of the vegetable oil in a 12-inch skillet over high heat. Add the beef and its marinade, and stir-fry until the meat is just browned, 45 to 50 seconds. Transfer the beef to a small bowl.

Wipe out the skillet and heat the remaining 1 Tbs. oil over medium-high heat.

Add the ginger and stir-fry until fragrant, 15 seconds. Add the broccoli and 1/4 cup water, cover, and steam until the broccoli is just tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Stir in the black bean sauce mixture, the stir-fried beef and the mushrooms and cook until the sauce is thick and bubbly, about 1 minute. Add the cashews and toss to combine. Serve with steamed rice.

Variations

To serve 1 vegetarian and 3 meat lovers: Reduce the flank steak to 8 oz. After steaming the broccoli, stir in the black bean sauce mixture and the mushrooms and cook until the sauce is thick and bubbly, about 1 minute. Add the cashews and toss to combine. Transfer 2 heaping cups to an individual serving bowl for the vegetarian portion, then add the stir-fried beef to the skillet and toss to combine.

Serving Suggestions

Serve with brown or white rice and Miso Mushroom Soup.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 410; Fat (g): 24; Fat Calories (kcal): 210; Saturated Fat (g): 5; Protein (g): 24; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 11; Carbohydrates (g): 27; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 5; Sodium (mg): 1580; Cholesterol (mg): 45; Fiber (g): 5;

Photo: Scott Phillips

A go-to for Asian flavors: Used hanger steak, not so much broccoli, nice to have an Asian dish that doesn't have sesame oil, which I love. Just a change of pace.

Well I really liked it. Made it last night and used thinly sliced red peppers instead of broccoli, and I just sauteed them instead of steaming them. Extra mushrooms, because we love mushrooms, and served over sushi rice. The beef was so quick to cook and yet so tender, so this will be one I'll make regularly.

I agree with the first commenter that something was missing here. I think the proportions are way off. First, to steam 2 lbs of broccoli crowns requires a very large pan and even then, it takes longer than five minutes. But regardless of the cooking technique, that amount of broccoli overpowers the sauce component. That is to say, the sauce becomes watered down and lacks flavor. Second, I really would have liked to have tasted the blackbean sauce more, but it was completely overpowered by the mushroom liquid. I think either an increase in the blackbean sauce or the a reduction in the amount of liquid is called for. I'm not sure that I will make this recipe again, but if I do, I will certainly play with the proportions.

I like to add sliced red peppers to this. just par boil them slightly b/c they taste good still a bit crisp. Tofu is a good alternative to beef.

Outstanding flavors and very easy to prepare. See my entire review at: http://themomchef.blogspot.com/2010/03/broccoli-and-shiitake-stir-fry-with.html

We really liked it. Once I was into prepping I realized I did not have a jar of the fermented black beans so I used brown bean sauce and added extra garlic instead. I also added some sesame oil to the cooking oil (we use peanut) to punch up the flavor just a bit. Definitely use lower sodium soy sauce, otherwise it gets a wee bit too salty. We used beef this time, but it I were to make it vegetarian I would "beef" it up with more mushrooms (probably fresh portabellas) to add body to the stir-fry...it's a lotta broccoli!

This was ok. My husband and I agreed it tasted ok but was missing something, I just couldn't figure out what the missing flavor was.

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