szechuan beef and green beans 015

Szechuan Beef and Green Beans (recipe adapted from “Mcnuttle” on grouprecipes.com )

I’ve been researching szechuan beef recipes for awhile now, and I keep coming back to this one that I adapted from grouprecipes.com. I found some valuable references along the way too. If you are interested in Szechuan cooking check out Fuchsia Dunlop’s “Land of Plenty.” For a more general Chinese cookbook try “Wisdom of the Chinese Kitchen” by Grace Young.

If you’ve never had szechuan peppercorns before, they are worth trying. (I buy mine from Penzey’s.) Some szechuan recipes that call for the peppercorns actually have “numbing” in the title, but I don’t think they are overbearing at all. They provide some heat and a pleasant tingling sensation to the tongue. To prepare the peppercorns for this recipe, fry them in a dry pan over medium-high heat until fragrant, then grind in a mortar and pestle.

Ingredients

marinade

  • 2 1/2 tablespoons dark soy sauce, divided
  • 5 tablespoons Chinese rice wine (Shaoxing), divided
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon bean sauce (I use Healthy Boy brand soy bean paste)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons sriracha chili paste
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch

other

  • 1 1/2 pounds flank steak (or rib-eye), cut into thin 1″ slices
  • 3 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
  • 5 dried red Chinese chilies, broken in half
  • 1 orange or green bell pepper, chopped into 1/2″dice
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 pound green beans, ends trimmed off
  • 3 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and minced
  • 1 teaspoon szechuan peppercorns (toasted and ground)
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • sesame oil (to taste)

Preparation

Make the marinade. In a medium bowl combine  1 1/2 teaspoons dark soy sauce, 3 tablespoons Chinese rice wine, bean sauce, sriracha chili paste, and cornstarch.  Mix in the flank steak and marinate for 30 minutes or more.

Heat a large wok (or non-stick frying pan) over high heat until almost smoking. Swirl in one tablespoon of the peanut oil, and add dried red chiles. When they are darkened, add the bell pepper. Cook until slightly softened. Remove from heat and set aside in a small bowl.

Heat another tablespoon of peanut oil in wok. Add the onions and brown. Remove from heat and set aside in a small bowl.

In a large mixing bowl toss green beans with one tablespoon of dark soy sauce. Add to wok and cook until softened. Remove from heat and return beans to the mixing bowl and set aside.

Divide the marinated beef among two small bowls. Heat 1/2 tablespoon peanut oil in wok. Add the first batch of meat into a single layer in the pan and leave it undisturbed until the bottom browns. Then continue stir frying until cooked through. Remove from heat and set aside in a bowl. Wipe the wok clean for the second batch. Heat final 1/2 tablespoon oil in wok. Spread out remaining beef into a single layer in the wok and leave it undisturbed until the bottom browns. Mix in the garlic, ginger, and szechuan peppercorns, and continue stir frying until cooked through. Stir the first batch of beef back into the pan.

Add the remaining 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce and 2 tablespoons rice wine. Return to the wok the bell peppers, chilies, onions, green beans, and beef. Add the chicken broth and heat until cooked through.

Drizzle with sesame oil to taste. Serve with steamed white rice.

Other Chinese favorites

Mongolian Beef
Shrimp in Lobster Sauce
Kung Pao Chicken

What’s oishii? “Oishii” (pronounced “oy she”) is the Japanese word for delicious. I love sharing great recipes I discover from popular restaurants, cookbooks, food magazines (Bon Appétit, Food & Wine, etc.), tv shows, friends, family, and other blogs. I also develop my own. Please contact me if there is a recipe you would like the test kitchen to consider: michaelwbeyer@hotmail.com

If you enjoyed this post, we would love to hear from you! Please leave some feedback in the comments section below. -Michael

Join “Oishii!” on Facebook