….. I made Ginger Beef

Posted by on 13/02/2012

Hello Everybody!

I decided this week to try my hand at something I havn’t made in quite some time.
Ginger Beef – if you’re from Alberta, you know what I’m talking about. It’s a dish invented in Calgary served at Chinese and Asian restaurents around the province that has recently started to spread to major cities in some other regions. Crispy strips of marinated beef with stir fried vegetables and a spicy sauce, it’s sweet and delicious. Ginger beef was actually my first foray into food from another culture when I was younger, though it was indeed invented here.

Step one : Marinade the beef ( 24-48 hours)

The ingredients:

3-4 Tablespoons of ginger juice (grate it and then squeeze what you get. You’ll be surprised at the amount of juice in fresh ginger.)
1 fresh, cold egg (whites only)
Cornstarch – 1 cup
7up – 1cup
Rice wine vinegar -1/2 cup
Soy sauce ( I use tamari and VH soy sauce, both gluten free. Tamari is brewed and has a Very good flavour, but it’s more expensive. I call VH saltbrown but it gets the work done)
Sambal Oelek chilli paste (yea… this goes in everything)
1/4 of an onion
3 cloves of garlic
chilli oil

this part really wasn’t that hard. Just chop everything and mix it up in the bowl. Helps if you add the liquid ingredients to the corn starch and whisk it for a bit before you add the onions in, but the order of ingredients here really isn’t going to change anything.

Then, Thinly slice some flank steak and put it in a container with your marinade. It’s easier to do if it’s frozen, so that you can cut the meat very thin against the grain.

If you want to cheat, you can just use stir fry strips. Though, if thicker you may want to leave them in the marinade for longer. I used stir fry strips and marinated for 48 hours with delicious results.

There’s the beef before it went into the fridge on friday, and here’s the beef sunday when it was done. You can see that the vinegar has started to cook the meat a little:

the sauce
note: I’m avoiding using added sugar in this recipe, by substituting water with 7-up in some places ( like the marinade, here in the sauce, and later on in the batter)

Ginger juice
Both types of soy sauce again
sesame oil
sesame seeds
sambal oelek
rice wine vinegar
Orange juice
tbsp corn starch
home made chilli oil (I grow my own thai chilli plants)

Put all ingredients in a small pot on the back burner. Stir and bring to a simmer, then turn off the heat and refrigerate until you are ready to stir fry- bring it back out when you are setting up the wok or finished cutting the veg. Letting it simmer for a bit ensures everything’s had a chance to mix, gives the garlic a chance to cook, and helps set the corn starch so your sauce will thicken

Now that you’ve made your sauce, go get the beef from the fridge. I use a slotted spoon to get all my beef out of the marinade.

I then whisked Potato starch and rice flour into the marinade until it thickened up in to a batter. I need to work on my ratios a bit better, because my end product didn’t quite get the crunch I was looking for.

This is what the batter looked like when I knew it was done:

Pour your batter into the beef, stir thoroughly to make sure it’s all covered. If you have a deep fryer, now is the time to break it out! Otherwise, do what I do and use as pot on the stove. Make sure you have tall walls on your pot though, and don’t fill it up too much with oil. I like to use one where i can have it about 1/3 full of oil,but still get all my food floating in it. This tends to lower the amount of splatters i have to deal with.

I deepfried my beef, dried it off on papertowels, and set it to the side :

Now, to bring it all together.

The Main Event

First, get your vegetables together for the stir fry (you can add celery, someone here can’t eat it)

I used:
Broccoli crowns
Snow peas
water chestnuts ( sliced, rinsed)
yellow pepper
Carrot- angle sliced to increase surface area
sliced onion

Next, throw the vegetables into a hot, oiled, large frying pan or a wok ( preferred) to stir fry. At the same time, bring the sauce from earlier back up to a simmer.

Stir fry them until soft. Then, add the deepfried beef and let them fry for a bit to crisp up a bit more:

Pour in the sauce once it’s started to simmer, and stir/toss thoroughly to mix it all together. I like to use my set of cooking chopsticks, or a combination of woodenspoon and flipper.
I add in some sesame seeds and a very small amount of sesame oil to finish it at this point too.

Here we have the gingerbeef just as it finished and I was about to call the guys over to eat:

And after all that work, I got to sit down to a huge delicious bowl of gingerbeef on rice.

I made it myself, with 100% glutenfree ingredients- and it tasted like it came from a restaurent. I was lucky to be able to save any for lunch!



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