Gary won’t be leaving me for a young floozy tonight. At least not until after dinner.
When I found some really good looking beef already cut into “stir-fry strips” I knew it was my husband’s lucky day. Meat plus stir fry? This is certainly proof that there is a higher being, at least in Gary’s assessment of the universe.
Here’s something it took me a while to figure out. If you have a small arsenal of Asian ingredients in the fridge and pantry (things like soy sauce, oyster sauce, chili sauce, black bean garlic sauce, sesame oil, chili oil, hoisin sauce, fish sauce, miso paste—not necessarily all, even some), you are then free to play around with different mixtures of the bunch, and dilute them with a bit of water or broth, and maybe a slug of mirin or dry sherry, and you have made yourself a stir fry sauce.
How to Thicken Sauce for Stir Fry
A little cornstarch will help a thinner sauce thicken in the pan, a little acid (rice vinegar, lemon juice) at the end is often a nice note, but truly, you should untether yourself from a written recipe after making a few stir fries and see what you come up with. It’s very liberating, and other than watching that things don’t become too salty, you’ll find it surprisingly easy to come up with something wonderful.
Other Stir Fry Recipes:
- Chicken Stir Fry with Peanuts
- Shrimp and Broccoli Stir Fry with Udon Noodles
- Chicken, Broccoli and Sugar Snap Pea Stir Fry
- Lemon and Scallion Chicken Stir Fry
- Chicken and Cabbage Stir Fry with Miso Sauce
- Chicken and Spinach Stir-Fry with Ginger and Oyster Sauce
- Spicy Stir Fried Beef and Vegetables
And you may also want to know: How to Cook Perfect Rice on the Stove.
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Spicy Stir Fried Beef and Vegetables
- 1 ⅓ cup hoisin sauce
- 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon sriracha sauce or to taste
- ½ cup water
- 3 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
- 2 pounds beef stir-fry strips
- Coarse or kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- 2 large onions halved and very thinly sliced
- 2 red bell peppers seeded and very thinly sliced
- 6 cups chopped broccoli
- 1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger
- 2 teaspoons freshly minced garlic
- 1 10-ounce package hot cooked udon noodles prepared according to package directions
- In a container with a lid, combine the hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil, sriracha sauce, and ½ cup water. Cover and shake to combine well.
- Heat a large skillet or a wok over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil, and when hot, add half of the beef strips. Season lightly with salt and pepper, and stir-fry until no longer pink, about 3 minutes. Turn them into a serving dish. Repeat with another tablespoon of the oil and the rest of the beef strips, then add them to the first batch of cooked beef.
- Wipe out the pan and heat the remaining tablespoon oil, and heat over high heat. Add the onions and peppers and stir-fry for 4 minutes until the vegetables are just tender. Add the broccoli, ginger and garlic and stir-fry for 3 minutes, then add ¼ cup water, and cover the pan. Allow to steam for another 2 minutes until the broccoli is crisp tender. Re-shake the sauce and add it to the pan along with the cooked beef and stir-fry until everything is well coated with the sauce.
- Wipe out the serving dish, place the noodles in the bottom, then top with the stir fry and serve hot.
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