I’ve eaten basically no red meat since coming to the UK, and while I think it’s great to eat less meat, I realized I could probably do with an iron and protein boost. So, I got some relatively lean diced beef from Aldi and resolved to use up some of my marmalade, ginger, frozen broccoli, and black bean sauce while I was at it. It all got cooked together with some peppers, bean sprouts, and mushrooms, and mixed in with rice and lentils for a one-bowl meal.
How did it go? I’m a huge fan of fried rice with egg, but adding an egg to this seemed like overkill (though I might do it for dinner after my rowing race on Thursday). The beef is a bit tough, which I suppose is to be expected…you get what you pay for, and all that. If you can find it, I’d be inclined to substitute thinly sliced beef (the kind usually used for bulgogi), cooked separately with sesame oil and garlic and stirred in at the last minute. The sauce tasted good on its own, but I underestimated the quantity I would need, so it didn’t come out very strongly in the main dish. As usually, I’d increase the amount of ginger and spicy components next time as well. Overall, though, it’s a relatively healthy meal, with lots of vegetables, fiber (particularly if you eat it with brown rice and lentils), and a reasonable amount of iron and protein.
Ginger-Orange Beef Stir-Fry
Yield: 8+ servings.
1 Tbsp olive or sesame oil
1 onion, chopped
400 g (~1 lb) lean beef, cut into bite-sized pieces
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tbsp fresh grated ginger
Salt and pepper
2 bell peppers, coarsely chopped
1 carrot, medium chop
3 handfuls frozen broccoli, thawed (~ 1 large head fresh)
300 g (~ 3 c) bean sprouts, washed
400 g mushrooms, coarsely chopped (~ 4 c)
Sauce (I’d say double the quantity):
3 Tbsp marmalade
1 Tbsp wholegrain mustard
1 Tbsp fresh grated ginger
1 tsp ground ginger
1 Tbsp spicy black bean sauce
Pepper to taste
Water or pan juices for thinning
Rice or mixed rice and lentils for serving
Heat oil in a large skillet/frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook ~ 5 minutes, until slightly softened. Push the onions to the edges and add beef pieces to the middle, then add freshly grated ginger, garlic, and salt and pepper to taste on top. Let brown 4-5 minutes, then flip. (At this point, my beef had released a lot of juices; I scooped up a few tablespoons and used them to thin the sauce later.)
Add peppers and carrot and stir to combine. Let cook until slightly softened, about 7 minutes. Meanwhile, coarsely chop the broccoli and mushrooms. Add broccoli, cover pan, and let cook, stirring occasionally and adding a bit of water or soy sauce if necessary to prevent burning, until stem pieces are slightly tender (about 5 minutes for me, but if you’re using fresh broccoli, it may take longer). Add bean sprouts, stir in, and repeat the process until sprouts are slightly soft (about 5 more minutes).
At some point in here, make the sauce: using a fork, beat together marmalade, mustard, ginger, and black bean sauce (it should be quite thick). Thin until easily pourable with pan juices or water. Taste and add additional spices or ingredients if necessary.
Add chopped mushrooms to the pan and pour sauce over them. Stir to combine, cover, and let cook until mushrooms are tender (about 8 minutes).
Serving suggestion: over or mixed with rice or mixed rice and brown lentils, with optional extra soy sauce, black bean sauce, hot sauce, picked bamboo shoots, or other appropriate condiments you have handy.