Happy Monday! It’s the second week of May and I’m excited to get right to it! You all know I’m attempting to master Asian cuisine dish by dish. I’ve done General Tso’s Chicken, Shrimp Fried Rice, Orange Chicken, Korean BBQ and tons of stir fry. Recently I had the taste for Pepper Steak and I knew I had a flank steak in the deep freezer, so I thought, “let’s give it a shot”.
Justapinch.com has a great recipe for Chinese Pepper Steak that is very simple. 13 ingredients and 3 steps..not too bad. There were a couple of swaps and a substitution, oh and I had to get 1 item – the dry sherry. I substituted the peanut oil for vegetable oil, and swapped out fresh ginger for ground ginger I have on hand, and minced garlic in the jar that I keep in the refrigerator. I did buy fresh peppers and onion because my husband loves that largely cut crisp of the fried peppers and onions. You could use a frozen pepper and onion mix to save time but the veggies won’t be as firm.
Right off the you want to slice your flank steak diagonally against the grain.
With the flank steak sliced, the official first step is to mix the marinade in a howl. That includes the soy, dry sherry, sugar, cornstarch and 1/2 cup of water. I let my meat marinate for at least a couple of hours.
When you’re ready to cook your pepper steak you’ll want to get your wok hot. Not too hot though. I’ve made the mistake multiple times of letting it get to hot, adding in my oil and garlic and getting popped by hot oil on my arms or face. Oil, garlic and scallions are added to the hot wok for 30 seconds before the first batch of sliced beef flank steak is cooked for 3 minutes.
The cooked steak is removed from the pan before the remaining half is cooked in the pan. With all of the steak cooked, the cut peppers and onions are fried in the pan.
I browned my veggies a little before adding the remaining marinade to the wok and cooked till bubbly and thickened. All of the cooked steak is added back into the pan and mixed in with the sauce and vegetables.
I poured the contents of the beef flank marinade in the pan with the steak and vegetables and allowed it to cook until the liquid began to bubble and thicken.
I also made Chinese Spare Ribs to go with the Beef Pepper Steak. I found a pack of St. Louis style spare ribs in my deep freezer that I thawed before removing the back membrane.
I was able to use a butter knife to remove the membrane from the ribs. Once the membrane was gone, I was able to easily slice the ribs individually.
With the ribs cut, I was able to prepare the marinade according to the recipe instructions. The recipe I used is compliments of Food Network courtesy of Jeff Mauro who uses hoisin, soy sauce, honey, five spice powder, ginger and food coloring for the best Chinese Spare Ribs I’ve ever tasted. I prepared the marinade by combining all ingredients into a non-reactive bowl. I did season my ribs with meat tenderizer before bagging them in a gallon zip bag and covering them with half of the marinade. I allowed the ribs to marinate in the refrigerator while I prepared the Pepper Steak.
Once marinated I grilled the ribs indoors on my grill pan, basting with the reserved marinade before I baked them all together in a pan for roughly 1.5 or longer until the ribs were tender.
With the ribs baking away in the oven I whipped up some Shrimp Fried Rice (you can check out a previous post I think for the details) and lastly but not least, the Crab Rangoon. First let me say, it took me a couple of stores to find the wonton wrappers. I was delighted to find them in a Food Lion near my house, so I grabbed two packs as they were 2 for $5.00. The packages had to have at least 24 wrappers or more as I had so much filling and wrappers to use, that I ended up frying the remaining Crab Rangoons the day after as a snack.
Crab Rangoon are easy to assemble. Dinner Then Dessert.Com has a great recipe that is simple to make yet full of flavor. 7 ingredients is all you need for restaurant quality Crab Rangoon – crab meat (imitation is noted in the recipe), 8 oz of cream cheese, minced garlic, Worcestershire sauce, wonton skins, a beaten egg and oil for frying. Once the crab meat is chopped into small pieces it is then mixed well with the cream cheese, garlic and worcestershire sauce. I also added some green onions to mine before I assembled the Crab Rangoon. There were multiple methods that I employed in fixing these, the best method that allowed the pocket to retain all of the filling was a double skinned wonton that was pinched together in the center. The beaten egg was used to seal the edges of the Crab Rangoons before they were deep-fried to golden perfection.
With all of the items done, I fixed our plates anxious to dig in.
When dinner was complete my husband walked in, in search of the infamous Chinese food boxes that litter our trash at times. There were none. He was impressed. I was content. We ate. We enjoyed it. It was actually good and it tasted fresh and authentic. I am so pleased with how this meal came out that I will definitely be adding this to our regular meal rotation.
Till next time … Be Blessed and Be a Blessing!
A Very Pleasant Mom of 4