Here’s how it came about. After a weekend of indulgence, my “I don’t eat plants” fiance actually asked me to feed him some vegetables. You know it’s time for veggies when Alasdair is requesting them. So, I thought, what’s a good way to sneak a bunch of vegetables into dinner? Stir fry! It’s easy, it’s quick and you can toss in a few servings of veggies without feeling like you’re eating a plate of greens. The sauce idea stemmed from the fact that I had a 3-lb bag of clementines. I love when clementines are in season and you can get a huge box or bag of the sweet, juicy little buggers for $3. As much as I try though, I can rarely finish the entire bag before they start to go bad. So, I decided to use them for cooking. I’d heard of orange beef so why not clementine beef? I think it was a great idea, but it just didn’t translate to the plate very well. I mean, it was a decent healthy meal but not the explosion of flavor I imagined. Probably because I accidentally poured some of the water from the steamed vegetables into the stir fry so the flavors were diluted.
BUT I still think it has potential. It just needs a little tweaking. We had it for leftovers tonight and added a bit more spice which made it better but also overpowered some of the sweetness. If I were a patient cook, I would try again and test the recipe until it was perfect. But I’m not patient. I will try again sometime in the future, but tomorrow’s a new day and a new recipe, so, I would like to challenge those who read this blog to try to improve upon this recipe. If you have success, please let me know!
1.5 beef sirloin, chopped into 1-inch cubes
1 package soba noodles
1 bunch Bok choy, chopped (about 2 cups)
1 bundle asparagus, chopped (about 2 cups)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ginger, minced
1 tablespoon chili pepper, minced (I used a Hatch chili pepper because it was on sale at the grocery store – it was a lot less spicy than I expected which was one of the issues with this dish)
4 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
1 tsp chili garlic sauce
1/3 cup clementine juice (6-7 clementines)
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Combine the soy sauce, rice vinegar, honey, chili garlic sauce, and clementine juice in a medium bowl. Add the beef and mix with the sauce.
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large saute pan. Add beef mixture and cook until no longer pink – about 3-4 minutes.
In a different pant, heat 1 tablespoon olive in a medium pan. Add the garlic and ginger. Saute for 30 seconds. Add the chili peppers and saute for another 30 seconds. Add the Bok choy and asparagus. Add a tablespoon of water to help the vegetables steam down (I added too much water which was another problem).
Cook for about 2 minutes then add the vegetables to the beef mixture. Turn the heat down to simmer and cook the beef and veggies together for five minutes.
Cook the noodles according to the package and then add them to the pan with the beef and veggies. Cook for another minute. You can add a squeeze of clementine and a bit of shaved ginger at this point.
Healthy Recipe Ecstasy? Like I said, this recipe was less impressive than I hoped. But with a few tweaks — maybe spicier chili peppers, less diluted sauce — I think this could be a really good stir fry. Regardless of the flavor, it’s definitely healthy!