There are a few dishes in the world that I would happily eat at any given day, and any given moment even if I was not hungry. Easy Spicy Broccoli Beef is most definitely one of those dishes. Bursting with two of my favourite things -beef and broccoli- coated with a mahogany, perfectly spicy, garlic and ginger sauce, Easy Spicy Broccoli Beef is not fancy, but it is easy on the eyes, simple to throw together, and oh-so-satisfying.
If you’ve eaten Chinese take-out, it’s likely you’ve had some iteration of this classic American Chinese dish. And if you’ve eaten it from more than one restaurant, you’re probably aware that there are wildly differing levels of quality of this dish from one eatery to another. For some reason, the Chinese restaurants in my neck of the woods seem to take a perverse pride in serving sad beef with overcooked broccoli swimming in a non-descript brown sauce that really doesn’t taste of one thing or another.
When Easy Spicy Broccoli Beef is done right, it sings with garlic, ginger, and just the right level of spice. And when it’s done REALLY right, the sauce is just thick enough to cling to and coat the broccoli and beef without being gloppy or soupy. The broccoli should be tender enough to bite easily, but still give a little snap, and the beef needs to be tender but not falling apart.
This method takes some of the middle-man steps out of most Spicy Beef with Broccoli recipes and keeps it streamlined and simple without sacrificing any of the taste. I hope you love it as much as my family does!
- There are a couple of cuts of beef that are usable in this recipe. The very best beef for the job is skirt steak, but depending on where you are in the country, that can get a little pricey. Flat iron steak makes a reasonable and a slightly less expensive substitute. For the budget minded, a top round steak will substitute admirably and be far gentler on your bank account. Whichever cut you go for, though, please remember to cut with the grain into pieces about 3 inches wide. After cooking as directed in the first step, rest the meat and then flip the pieces perpendicular and slice diagonally across the grain into 1/8-inch to 1/4-inch thick strips before tossing back into the sauce.
- Please use fresh broccoli florets in this recipe for optimal results. As odd as it may sound, taking the time to turn the pieces of broccoli stem side down will help insure the texture you’d like in the finished broccoli. The stems should be easily pierced with a sharp knife when they are finished roasting.
- Because the broccoli is cooked in an extremely high heat, the tops may get a light char in places. That is actually desirable and adds a lovely flavor dimension to the finished dish.
Easy Spicy Broccoli Beef
For the Beef:
- 1 1/2 pounds skirt steak can substitute flank steak or top round
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons sunflower or vegetable oil
For the Broccoli:
- 2 pounds broccoli florets
- 1 tablespoon sunflower or vegetable oil
- 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
For the Sauce:
- 1 cup low sodium chicken broth
- 1/2 cup oyster sauce
- 5 tablespoons dry sherry or rice wine
- 2 tablespoons low sodium soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons chili garlic sauce
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
To finish the dish and serve:
- 2 teaspoons sunflower or vegetable oil
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Hot rice
- Sesame seeds
- Minced green onions
To Sear the Beef:
Lay the beef out on a cutting board. Break it down a bit by slicing into 3-inch thick strips along with the grain. Sprinkle both sides of the steaks with salt, pepper, and cornstarch and rub to coat.
Heat a heavy bottomed skillet over high heat. Drizzle in 2 tablespoons and heat until shimmery. Carefully lower the beef into the oil and sear for 3-4 minutes on each side. Transfer the beef to a rimmed plate and lightly tent with foil. Set the pan aside.
Preheat the oven to 500F. Line a sheet pan with foil. Drizzle any accumulated pan juices from the beef over the broccoli florets in a large mixing bowl. Add the sunflower oil and kosher salt and toss to coat. Arrange the broccoli stem sides down on the foil lined pan. Roast 10-12 minutes or until lightly charred on top and the stems are easily pierced with a sharp knife.
Slice the beef against the grain into 1/8-inch to 1/4-inch thick slices.
Whisk together the chicken stock, oyster sauce, sherry, soy sauce, chili garlic sauce, grated ginger, and cornstarch.
Return the pan you used to sear the beef to high heat. Drizzle in the 2 teaspoons of oil. Add the minced garlic and ginger and stir fry until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Pour in the sauce ingredients and bring to a boil, scraping the crispy bits off of the bottom of the pan. Simmer until it begins to thicken. Toss in the sliced beef and any accumulated pan juices. When the beef is done to your liking, toss in the cooked broccoli and heat through. Serve immediately on fresh rice. If desired, garnish with sesame seeds and sliced scallions.