Stir Fry Beef with Ginger and Spring Onions (姜葱牛肉): Another local zichar favourite, this key to success with this dish is to use the best ginger, how the right way to slice the beef, and careful control of the fire to ensure that your beef is just-done, not undercooked or overcooked!
Beef with Ginger and Spring Onions, also known as Jiang Cong Jiu Rou, may seem like a simple dish to make. After all it only needs 3 main ingredients (no prizes for guessing which three!) + the usual Chinese condiments, and 35 minutes to get from fridge to table. But perfecting this recipe does requires some practice and a good dose of grandma’s ‘best-kept’ cooking wisdom!
Firstly, make sure that you use Bentong ginger from Malaysia, known as the king of ginger for its distinctive aromatic and spicy flavour. Read more about this in the recipe notes below.
Secondly, ensure that you slice the beef (likewise if you are using pork instead) against the direction of the grain of the meat. This ensures that the meat will not be tough and chewy.
Thirdly, using sodium bicarbonate to marinate the beef will help to further tenderise it. But be careful not to add salt into the marinate as it tends to draw out water in the beef, making it dry and dehydrated after frying.
Lastly, make sure that you do not overcook the beef otherwise it will ruin all your hard work! I prefer to fry the beef separately first until 70-80% cooked, and then add it into towards the end to further cook until it is just done.
Are you ready now to try out this yummy zichar dish for yourself? Then move straight on to the recipe section (make sure you read the recipe notes first for the full set of tips, before attempting the recipe!) All the best and have fun in the kitchen!
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Stir-Fried Beef with Ginger and Spring Onions (姜葱牛肉)
Another local zichar favourite, this key to success with this dish is to use the best ginger, slice the beef in the right way and careful control of the fire to ensure that your beef is just-done, not undercooked or overcooked! Takes only 35 minutes to complete!
- 300 gm Beef
- 1 Bundle Spring Onion
- 60 gm Ginger
- 200 ml Oil to deep fry the beef
- 1 TBsp Chinese Rice Wine Hua Tiao Chiew
Marinade for Beef
- 1/4 tsp Sodium Bicarbonate to tenderise the beef
- 1 TBsp Light Soy Sauce
- 1 TBsp Cornflour
- A pinch Pepper
- 3 TBsp Water
- 2 tsp Oil
- 1 tsp Cornflour
- 2 tbsp Water
Wash the beef and pat dry. Cut the beef into thin slices by slice against the grain (see video for demonstration).
Add the marinade ingredients to the sliced beef. Then mix well and marinate for about 20 mins.
Remove the skin from the ginger and slice thinly.
Remove the roots of the spring onion and wash thoroughly. Cut into 5-6 cm lengths.
In a bowl, add in all the ingredients for the gravy and mix well.
In a separate bowl, add in the ingredients for the cornflour slurry and mix well.
Heat up 200 ml of oil in a wok over high heat. Once heated, add in the beef and quickly stir fry it for half a min or until about 70-80% cooked.
Quickly transfer to a plate. Pour the excess oil in a bowl, leaving behind 2 TBsp of oil in the wok.
Heat up the oil over high heat, then add in the ginger slices fry for 1 min or until aromatic.
Next, add in the spring onions and stir fry mixing well. Do not overcook the spring onion otherwise it will be too limp.
Add back the beef and the bowl of sauce to the wok and give it a quick stir.
- Immediately add in 1 TBsp of Chinese Rice Wine and the cornflour slurry. After 0.5 minute, or when the gravy thickens, transfer to a plate. Best served hot with a bowl of hot steaming rice.
DETAILED RECIPE NOTES
The purpose of this section is to provide information about dietary information about this recipe based on our best knowledge. However, we are not certified healthcare professionals so please seek the advice of your nutritionist or doctor before proceeding to use these recipes.
- Child-Friendly: No modifications needed.
- Egg-Free: No modifications needed.
- Fish-Free: No modifications needed.
- Gluten-Free: Use gluten free sauces.
- Nut-Free: No modifications needed.
- Shellfish-Free: No modifications needed.
Recipe FAQs & Grandma’s Best-Kept Secrets
1. How to buy the right cut of beef?
Firstly, if buying the beef from the market, be sure to tell the seller to give you the tender part for stir fry or for steam boat. The seller will usually give you what you need. Secondly, make sure that the beef is a bright reddish color. If it that looks dark and dull coloured, it is usually not fresh.
2. What is the correct way to slice the beef so it won’t be tough?
When cutting the beef, make sure to cut it at cross section ie across the grain ( muscle fibres). Do not slice the beef parallel with the direction of the grain otherwise it will be very tough and rubbery. Also, do not slice the beef too thinly otherwise it will tend to overcook and it will not has much substance.
3. How can I make the beef more tender?
Adding a little of sodium bi-carbonate helps to tenderise the beef.
4. Why can’t you add salt to marinate the beef?
I do not add salt to marinate the beef as it has the tendency of drawing much juices from the beef thereby making it dry and dehydrated.
5. Which is the best type of ginger for this dish?
Young ginger which is pale yellow is usually meant for pickling with vinegar as it is less fibrous. The old and matured ginger is more spicy and fragrant. I usually buy the Bentong ginger which is very, very fragrant and more spicy than normal ginger. It is grown in Bukit Tinggi in Pahang and is known as the King Of Ginger. It has a higher nutritional value and of course, the price is 4-5 times higher too. You can identify it as it is darker in colour, thinner and has a somewhat muddy appearance.