Although I am trying to keep the covid-19 19 kgs off my waistline, I can’t help but have a cheat meal once in a while (more like everyday). It’s not my fault by the way – I had seen a certain dish on instagram and I just had to have it as I hadn’t eaten it in a long time annnnd I knew you guys would love it too! Mystery dish? Well, it’s in the title but the dish is Mongolian beef.
Fun fact: there is nothing Mongolian about this dish and it actually originates from Taiwan. Okay, perhaps not really that fun of a fact BUT it tastes darn good and I’m glad I managed to put it together after so long with the help of my SIL’s recipe (thanks zo!).
The base sauce is quite standard with a mix of ginger, garlic, soy sauce, and brown sugar, so throw in some dry chillies for a kick if you have them on hand, otherwise chilli flakes work well too.
Do not feel confined to using beef in this dish as chicken works just as well. However just be sure to use a good quality source of your chosen protein as it really is the star of the show. If you are using beef, either use a steak that is thinly sliced or beef strips.
I won’t lie and say this dish isn’t hands on because it does require you to be by the stove for the entirety of the cook, but with a cook time of 10-15 minutes, this dish can be ready in zero time at all. A little frying is required to ensure the beef has a nice crisp, but feel free to bake or stir-frying if you aren’t comfortable with a full on fry session.
Okay, I’ll stop chatting so you can have a read of tonight’s dinner recipe!
MONGOLIAN BEEF RECIPE
½ kg beef strips
1 teaspoon oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 tbsp cornstarch
Cornstarch for dredging
Vegetable/rapeseed/canola oil for frying
60ml soy sauce
60ml water or chicken stock * (see note)
1 tsp garlic, finely chopped or minced
½ tsp ginger, finely chopped or minced
½ – 1 tsp chilli flakes, depending on your preferred spiciness ** (see notes)
3-4tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp water to dissolve the cornstarch
Garnish: sesame seeds and spring onions
* If using chicken stock instead of water, slightly reduce the amount of soy sauce you use as it may make the dish a little too salty. If you are using a chicken stock cube and not fresh, just use a tiny bit and dissolve in water.
** You can use dried kashmiri chilli peppers in place of chilli flakes. I just used what I had on hand.
- Marinate the beef strips with soy sauce, vegetable oil, and cornstarch and mix. Leave for an hour
- After an hour, dredge the beef strips in cornflour, shaking off any excess, and leave to the side for 10 minutes so that the cornflour sticks to the meat.
- Heat oil in a deep pan or wok and place the beef strips so that they are not overlapping each other. Fry the beef and flip once you notice the beef browning. Remove the strips once the edges start to crisp and leave to drain on a paper towel.
- Drain the oil out of the pan, leaving behind 1tbsp, and place it back on the stove over medium heat.
- Fry the ginger, garlic, and chilli flakes for a minute. Follow this with the soy sauce and chicken stock/water and stir. Let this mixture simmer for 2 minutes.
- Slowly pour in the cornstarch slurry a little bit at a time and keep stirring until the sauce starts to thicken.
- Once the sauce is at the right consistency, throw in the beef and spring onions and combine. There shouldn’t be any sauce left in the pan at this point as it should be sticking to the beef.
- Garnish with sesame seeds and spring onions and serve immediately with rice.