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Skillet Mongolian beef reminds of old-school Chinese restaurant

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Mongolian beef over rice.

Any time I crank out a dish that announces itself with aromas of garlic, ginger and soy sauce, I pretty much know dinner will be a success.

This dish allows a wonderful glaze to coat the ultra-thin slices of steak. It reminds me of something you might get at an old-school Chinese restaurant.

Look for shaved beef steak: napkin-thin slices of beef that can come from any part of the cow. It might be labeled shabu-shabu (for Japanese cooking or Chinese hot pot) or bulgogi in Korean markets.

If shaved beef isn’t an option, place a piece of flank steak in the freezer until firm but not totally frozen, then thinly slice it across the grain. It will defrost as you cut it.

SKILLET MONGOLIAN BEEF

  • 1-1/2 pounds shaved beef
  • 1/4 cup vegetable or canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 6 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced (white and green parts)
  • Hot cooked rice, to serve
  • >> Sauce
  • 2 teaspoons vegetable or canola oil
  • 2 teaspoons finely minced garlic
  • 1 tablespoon freshly minced ginger
  • 1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar

To make sauce: In a small saucepan, heat oil. Add garlic and ginger; saute 30 seconds. Add soy sauce and brown sugar; bring to simmer, whisking frequently over medium heat. Let simmer and reduce until it forms a glaze, about 4 minutes. Set aside.

Meanwhile, toss shaved steak in bowl with cornstarch until evenly coated.

Line a counter or large plate with paper towels. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large skillet (the bigger the better) over medium-high. Saute beef in batches, taking care not to crowd pan, and flipping meat as it browns, about 1 minute per side. Transfer beef to paper towels.

Repeat until all beef is browned, adding more oil as needed (make sure oil has a chance to get hot before adding the next batch of beef).

Pour off any additional oil and return skillet to medium-high heat. Return all the beef to pan, along with sauce and scallions. Stir about 3 minutes, until sauce is thickened and glazes all of meat evenly. Serve over rice. Serves 6.

Approximate nutritional information, per serving: 309 calories, 14 g total fat, 3 g saturated fat, 61 mg cholesterol, 828 mg sodium, 24 g carbohydrate, 1 g fiber, 19 g sugar, 23 g protein.

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