Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry (Thit Bo Xao Bong Cai Xanh)

Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry (Thịt Bò Xào Bông Cải Xanh)

Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry (Thịt Bò Xào Bông Cải Xanh)

Long days call for Chinese takeout. They are quick, delicious and often inexpensive. One of my favorite Chinese-American takeouts is the beef and broccoli stir fry. I usually get a large order to go and have it with steamed white rice for a quick family meal at home on my lazy days.

Beef and broccoli stir fry (thit bo xao bong cai xanh) is a classic stir fry made with thinly sliced beef sirloin and fresh broccoli florets, coated in a thick savory soy-based sauce. The beef is tender and silky. The broccoli is perfectly crunchy. Together they make a well-balanced tasty meal in a bowl.

I eat beef and broccoli stir fry so often that it was time to learn how to make it at home. This way, I know exactly what goes into my food and more importantly, I’m guaranteed fresh ingredients. I’ve had a few too many times something that tasted like it had been sitting out all day. Limp and soggy vegetables are gross.

In my recipe below, I utilize a restaurant best kept secret, baking soda. A little bit of baking soda in the beef marinade tenderizes the meat. I also coat the beef slices in a thin layer of cornstarch and deep-fry them for that silky smooth texture that we associate with a good quality beef and broccoli.

For the broccoli, I cut them up into small pieces then steam them for no more than 3-4 minutes. Any longer, they turn into mush.

Once beef is deep-fried and broccoli is steamed, everything goes into a wok and tossed with fried garlic and coated with a soy-based mixture.

For a quick version, you can skip the deep-frying and steaming by simply tossing everything together in a wok. Textures will be compromised but you will still have the same great flavor.

The great thing about this dish is that it tastes more amazing the next day as the flavor seeps in. So, do yourself a favor and double the recipe. Leftovers are great for a next day lunch or dinner.

Enjoy the recipe below!

Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry (Thịt Bò Xào Bông Cải Xanh)

Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry (Thịt Bò Xào Bông Cải Xanh)

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Calphalon 12-inch Wok with Cover

Calphalon 12-inch Wok with Cover

Beef & Broccoli Stir Fry (Thit Bo Xao Bong Cai Xanh)

Serves 4-6

Ingredients

    Beef Marinade

  • 1-1/2 lbs beef sirloin or New York strip steak (slice thinly against the grain; partially freeze for easier slicing)
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 tablespoon granulated white sugar
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black or white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda (meat tenderizer)
  • Vegetables

  • 2 large broccoli floret heads (about 2 lbs total)
  • 1 small carrot (optional for color; peel and slice thinly at a diagonal)
  • Other Ingredients

  • Vegetable oil for deep-frying
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 3 garlic cloves (mince finely)
  • Stir Fry Sauce

  • 1 cup chicken stock or water
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon granulated white sugar
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing cooking wine
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, marinate beef with soy sauce, oyster sauce, sugar, sesame oil, ground black/white pepper and baking soda for 30 minutes.
  2. Steam the broccoli and/or carrots for 3-4 minutes.
  3. In a large wok, fill with vegetable oil 2-inches high and heat on medium high to 375°F or when a dropped piece of cornstarch starts to sizzle. Add cornstarch to the beef and toss to evenly coat. You should get something like a thin layer of batter on the beef slices. Deep-fry the beef slices for 20-30 seconds per batch. Transfer beef to a plate and set aside.
  4. Make the stir-fry sauce. Combine chicken stock/water, soy sauce, sugar, cooking wine and cornstarch. Mix with a fork until cornstarch is completely dissolved. Set aside.
  5. Remove all oil from the wok, leaving about 3 tablespoons. Add minced garlic and fry for 30 seconds until aromatic and lightly brown. Add stir-fry sauce and simmer on low until slightly thickened. Add fried beef and steamed broccoli/carrots. Toss until combined. Serve with steamed rice for a complete meal.