Back when I was a single college student, not as into cooking as I am today, there was a pepper-steak making kit, I think made by La Choy, that I liked making. I don’t know if it’s even sold anymore. You’d buy the steak separately and cut that up, but the vegetables came pre-cut in a can, along with a little packet of powder you’d mix with water to make the sauce. So it was mostly pre-made, but involved just enough cooking to make you feel like you accomplished something. And it was tasty.
But those preserved vegetables that came out of the can probably weren’t quite at the peak of their nutritional value. These days I still sometimes get the hankering for a simple stir-fry, but I use better and fresher ingredients. This is quick, easy and really good.
- 1 lb. sirloin steak
- 1/2 red bell pepper
- 1/2 green bell pepper
- 1 bunch green onions (scallions)
- 1 cup sliced mushrooms
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 15oz. can bean sprouts
- 1 cup dry rice (about 3 cups cooked)
- 1 Tablespoon corn starch
- 2 Tablespoons soy sauce
- 15 oz. low-sodium beef stock
- 2 Tablespoons peanut oil
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
Start cooking the rice according to the rice brand’s cooking instructions. It should take about 20 minutes to cook- just in time for the stir fry to be done cooking.
Cut the red and green peppers into thin strips. Slice up the mushrooms. Cut the green onions into about 1/2″ strips. Mince the garlic and ginger up finely. Cut the steak into thin strips similar to the peppers. Remove the bean sprouts form the can and drain. Now most of your work is already done:
Now we make the sauce. Mix a heaping tablespoon of corn starch with a little water. Mix that into the beef stock, and add the soy sauce and black pepper:
Now heat a couple tablespoons of peanut oil in a large pan, and brown the steak strips with the garlic and ginger. If you have a wok with gas stovetop burners, by all means use that- I have a wok, but alas my stove has electric burners so I use a flat pan to get the temperature hot enough– stir fry should involve high heat and plenty of stirring:
Add the remaining vegetables except for the bean sprouts, and stir-fry until the vegetables are cooked just enough to be still somewhat crisp and still brightly colored:
Add the bean sprouts and sauce and cook a little longer, stirring, until the sauce thickens up a little. Serve over the rice. Enjoy!