Monday, November 22, 2010

Beef with Broccoli in Oyster Sauce

When thinking of a dish composed chiefly of meat and vegetable, a stir-fried beef flavored with oyster sauce will always come to one’s mind. For some reason, beef and oyster sauce easily create a pleasant combination of flavors which works very well with many kinds of vegetables especially those belonging to the families of cauliflower, kale, cabbage, Brussels sprout as well as gourd like bitter melon. So when a friend requested that we cook broccoli for a change, in our regular list of weekly veggies actually, I immediately thought of beef broccoli. Sounds pretty delicious right!

Broccoli is a plant of the Kale family “Brassicaceae”. The plant has large lovely flower heads stunningly arranged in a tree-like fashion on branches sprouting from a thick stalk. The edible flower head is usually green in color and attached to an also edible stalk. The mass of flower heads is surrounded by leaves. Broccoli is a cool season annual crop most closely resembles cauliflower, a different cultivar group belonging to the same species. It is believed to have evolved from wild cabbage plant that grew on the continent of Europe.

Apart from tasting real good and quite an attractive ingredient, broccoli is a very important vegetable because it is highly nutritious. It offers many health benefits - enough reasons for us to regularly include it into our family’s everyday meal. It is an excellent source of vitamins C, K & A and dietary fiber; and a good source of selenium. In fact, a single serving of the vegetable could provide more than 30 mg of Vitamin C. It also has high levels of carotenoids, particularly rich in lutein and a provider of beta-carotene. Amazingly, it also contains multiple nutrients and chemical compounds with potent anti-cancer, anti-viral and anti-bacterial properties.

Recent studies reported that a high intake of broccoli has been found to reduce the risk of aggressive prostate cancer and beneficial in the prevention of heart disease. According to another study conducted by researchers from the Institute of Food at Norwich in the United Kingdom, a chemical naturally occurring in broccoli may actually block the development of tumors in people with a certain genetic trait. Further, scientists have discovered that eating broccoli has the ability to stop the spread of cancer because it encourages the body to produce a substance which fights cancer and blocks cancer cells from proliferating.

While broccoli is generally steamed or boiled to cook, it may actually be eaten raw. In the West, it is a popular raw vegetable like carrots, celery, etc. Since boiling reduces the beneficial and anti-cancer compounds of broccoli, other cooking techniques, such as microwaving, stir frying and of course steaming, which have no significant effect to the compounds, are oftentimes the much preferred method.

To cook the dish, we need about 600 grams of beef and about 500 grams of the wonder broccoli. Since this is a quick stir-fry cooking process, we need a tender cut of beef, either sirloin, tenderloin, or like what I have, a striploin also called strip steak, club steak or shell steak. The meat is thinly sliced to small bite sizes.

There are two sets of other ingredients needed; one for marinating and another one for final cooking. The marinade includes: 1½ tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbsp rice vinegar, 1 tbsp olive oil, a pinch of sugar and 1½ tbsp cornstarch dispersed in 1 tbsp water.

In a mixing bowl, combine the meat pieces and the rest of the marinating ingredients. Mix well to fully blend the flavor and coat the meat with the marinade. Marinate for about an hour inside the fridge.

The second set of ingredients compose of: 1 cup chopped green onions to 1-inch length, 1 thumb-sized ginger, peeled and julienne, 3 tbsp oyster sauce, 2 tbsp soy sauce, 1 tbsp rice vinegar, ½ tbsp sugar, ½ tsp sesame oil, a pinch of freshly ground pepper and 1 tbsp corn starch dispersed in ¼ cup water. Additionally, we also need about 1/3 cup vegetable oil for frying and sautéing and about ½ cup broth or hot water for thinning the sauce, if so needed.

In a smaller mixing bowl, combine oyster sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, sugar, sesame oil, ground pepper and cornstarch solution. Stir well blend the flavors and attain this exotic-looking sauce.

In a wide non-stick pan, heat about ¼ cup oil and stir-fry the marinated beef until almost cooked through and uniformly seared. Take the meat from the pan and set aside.

Cut the broccoli into flowerets and steam them for about 3 minutes or just until cooked through but still crunchy. Do not overcook!

At the same time that the broccoli is being steamed, cooking the beef with the sauce should be carried out. Timing is necessary for the two processes to end at almost the same time.

Using the same non-stick pan, heat about 2 tbsp of oil on medium flame. Fry the ginger until fragrant. Add in green onions and continue frying. Return the stir-fried beef and continue sautéing.

Immediately after, add the sauce and continue cooking until it thickens. Thin it out with some broth if necessary. As mentioned above, this point should almost jive with the time the broccoli is done steaming.

In a wide platter, arrange the steamed broccoli. Then carefully pour the meat and its sauce on top of the vegetable. It’s done. :-)

Serve immediately with steamed rice. You can also eat it on its own or perhaps with bread. While for me, broccoli is the perfect vegetable for this dish, using cauliflower or cabbage or even bitter gourd also works well. We’ll try that some other time.

For the meantime, try this sumptuous beef and veggie recipe. It’s healthy, tasty, and something the whole family will love. Enjoy! c”,)


  1. I've tried this recipe today and it's delicious. thank you for sharing your recipes. I hope that you will continue to post more of your recipes soon.

  2. i am glad you like the recipe, thank you too...we will continue posting recipes for everyone...

  3. Hello, I appreciate you for producing this awesome post. I’m really impressed with your way of writing and how you communicate your message. You’ve got a wonderful future in producing blogs and forums, that is certain. Continue the fantastic work.

  4. thank you Angeles City Pages, that's very kind of you .... your words are very encouraging .... just what bloggers like me sometimes need .... cheers!



Related Posts with Thumbnails