The best thing about stir fries?
They come together so quickly!
In this ginger beef stir fry we marinate strips of beef sirloin in a honey soy marinade, then quickly fry them in a hot pan with julienned ginger, red chilis, and sliced garlic.
A cornstarch slurry helps keep the beef strips from drying out and helps create a tasty glaze over the meat.
Thinly sliced scallions are stirred in at the end, and the whole thing is served over rice. Fast, easy, and tastes great!
The trick to a good stir-fry is working with a very hot, relatively stick-free pan. I say relatively stick-free because you don't want one of those stick-free pans with the coating that peels off, but say more like a well-seasoned wok or a cast iron frying pan.
Hard anodized aluminum will work too, as its surface is bonded into the pan and can take high temperature cooking. Cooking on high heat allows you to get a good sear on the meat and vegetables without overcooking them.
Ginger Beef Stir Fry
- 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
- 5 tablespoons soy sauce (use gluten-free soy sauce if cooking gluten-free)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon peeled, grated fresh ginger
- 1 teaspoon chile pepper flakes
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Beef and stir-fry
- 1 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 lb top sirloin steak
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil (preferably peanut)
- 1 tablespoon dark toasted sesame oil (optional)
- 3-4 green onions, cut on a diagonal, 1/2-inch apart, including the greens
- 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 2-3 hot chilies, preferably red serranos, seeded, sliced
- 1-inch knob of ginger, peeled, cut lengthwise into matchstick shapes
- 1/2 cup loosely packed, chopped cilantro
Chill steak, slice into strips:
Chill the steak in the freezer for 30 minutes before you slice it, this will make it easier to cut in thin slices. Slice the steak first crosswise in 1/2-inch thick slices. The cut each slice lengthwise into strips.
Marinate the beef:
In a medium bowl, whisk together the marinade ingredients; the soy sauce, vinegar, grated ginger, honey, red chile flakes, and cumin. Mix the beef in with the marinade to coat and let it sit for at least 30 minutes, and up to 4 hours, in the fridge.
Make cornstarch slurry:
In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of cold water to make a slurry.
Brown the beef strips:
Heat the oil in a wok (vegetable oil plus dark sesame oil if using), or a large sauté pan, over high heat until it is nearly smoking. As the oil is heating up, pat the beef dry and separate it into small batches no larger than what can fit into the palm of your hand. Working in batches, sauté beef until just brown outside but rare inside, no more than 1 minute. Transfer beef to a bowl.
Stir fry chilies, garlic, ginger:
When all of the beef is cooked, put the chilies and garlic into the pan and stir-fry 30-45 seconds. Add the julienned ginger and cook for 30-45 seconds more.
Add beef, cornstarch slurry, scallions:
Add the beef back to the pan. Add the cornstarch slurry. Add the scallions and mix everything together. Cook for 1 minute.
Remove from heat, stir in cilantro:
Turn the heat off and mix in the cilantro. Serve at once with steamed white rice.