Sunday, 26 June 2011

Spicy beef with Chinese pancakes & wasabi mayo

I was a bit lost as to what to make for a tasty Saturday night dinner. I knew I had a couple of beautiful organic rump steaks in the fridge though, so I flicked through a few recipe books and happened past a spicy beef stir fry recipe in Ching He Huang's Chinese Cookery.

She suggested that it could be served with traditional chinese pancakes but didn't provide a recipe, so I went searching on the nets and found one on BBC GoodFood, which I adapted to my tastes.

The pancakes were relatively simple in this recipe, although I did see more complicated ones.
I used a cup of mostly plain flour topped up with wholemeal, plus a teaspoon of caster sugar and 100ml of boiling water to bring it together. I kneaded it for a bit and then covered it in clingfilm and left it to rest for a while.

I then patted down my rump steaks with kitchen paper and sliced them, across the grain, quite thinly. I heated up a dry frying pan and added a couple of tbsp of cumin, one of dried chillies, a large pinch of salt and lots of freshly ground pepper. When they smelled wonderful I took them off the heat and coated the beef in them.

I settled down and de-podded my broad beans - all picked fresh from the garden which makes me smile, I've never grown broad beans before and these look great! A quick blanching for a few minutes and they were easy to shell. I also made up some wasabi mayonnaise, using 3 tbsp of mayonnaise, 1 tsp of wasabi powder, 1 tbsp of water and seasoned with caster sugar and a little salt. I chopped up fresh cucumber to go with the meal.

Then it was back to the pancakes, these are much easier than I thought they were going to be and came out perfectly first time. The dough needs to be divided into eight little balls, then two at a time, squish them a little flat and then brush one with sesame oil. Place a second one on top and, coating with flour, roll the two together until they form one really thin pancake. Keep going until you've made four.

Heat up a dry frying pan until very hot, then lay a pancake in for a minute, flip it and cook for another minute. Switch it for another pancake and while that one's cooking, find the seam where the two peices of dough were rolled together and pick them apart to make two wafer thin pancakes. Pop them onto a plate, under a damp teatowel. When you've made all the pancakes put them, still wrapped in the damp towel, into the oven on it's very lowest setting.

Back to the spicy beef: heat up a pan with a couple of tablespoons of oil in and stir fry the beef for a couple of minutes. Add 3 tbsp of light soy sauce and a teaspoon of shaoxing rice wine or sherry. When the beef is almost cooked, add a few sliced spring onions, the shelled broad beans and some chopped coriander.

Ching He Huang's Website
BBC GoodFood Homepage


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