Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Flank Steak Stir Fry, My New BFF

I'm crazily gathering recipes that are fast and easy and can be thrown together even when you have the coordination and where with all of a zombie which I understand is about to be the new norm for me with a newborn.

This one is modified from The Pioneer Woman and really aside from from a few tweaks the main difference is that I dump everything into a giant ziploc first (a step that can even be done several hours ahead) and then from the bag straight into a heated wok. Then while it's cooking all you have to do is cook the rice and dinner is DONE.

I realize I'm probably butchering wok cooking here by dumping everything in at once but I promise you it's still delicious and as long as you let everything rest a couple of minutes with the heat off after cooking the steak will be tender and delicious.

The secret is to reserve some of the chopped green onions and cilantro for garnish (though I doubt I'll remember to do this once sleep deprivation kicks in.)

Flank Steak Stir Fry

1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce (I've used regular and it was fine just don't add additional salt)
2 tablespoons white wine
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger, optional
2 whole peeled garlic cloves
good pinch red pepper flakes
1 to 1 1/2 pounds flank steak, trimmed of excess fat and sliced against the grain into thin slices (I like to then take the slices and cut them into 2 inch pieces but it's up to you)
5 green onions cut into 1/2 inch pieces plus 2 green onions, chopped and reserved for garnish
1/2 cup chopped cilantro, divided
Optional (or use all!) veg: 8 oz snow peas, 1 red bell pepper cut into slivers, 2 carrots sliced into thin rounds, 16 oz frozen broccoli, 1/2 small sweet onion cut into thin strips
2-3 tablespoons canola oil or peanut or olive oil
Rice, cooked according to package, to serve alongside (my recipe is 1 cup rice to 1 3/4 cups low sodium chicken stock, brought to a boil then reduced to low with lid on for 12 min but follow whatever yours says for the amount you want)
Wok or a large dutch oven or cast iron pan for frying

How To:
Add the soy sauce through the sesame oil to a large ziploc. Gently smush around while holding the top (you can seal and shake it if it helps) to mix everything together and help dissolve the cornstarch and brown sugar. You can also mix this up in a small bowl first but this saves a step and washing it up by doing it right in the bag. Win-win.

Add the ginger (if using) and the garlic, red pepper flakes, steak, 1/2 inch pieces of green onions, 1/4 cup chopped cilantro and the veggies of your choice. Smush everything around, seal and refrigerate if not making right away or simply seal and set aside while you prepare your wok.

Add the oil to the wok and turn it around carefully so that the sides get coated. Put over medium high heat and let get nice and hot for a couple of minutes. Carefully add the stir fry - the contents of the entire bag - to the wok using a wooden spoon to spread everything out as much as possible so it cooks evenly.

(FYI now is also the time to start your rice in another pot.)

Lower the heat slightly and cook, stirring every so often to keep everything from sticking as well as cooking evenly, for 4-5 minutes until the steak is cooked through and veggies have softened. This might take a little longer if you've opted for all the veggies as well as the full 1 1/2 pounds of steak as opposed to a pound.

Turn the heat off and let the stir fry rest for a couple of minutes. Serve over rice with chopped green onion and cilantro.

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