Got a busy night? Stir-fries are a quick solution for a night when dinner prep just can’t be time-consuming. My biggest beef (no pun intended) with stir fries, though, is that the meat involved can often end up cooked to death. Even though it’s quick and easy, the thinly sliced meat that facilitates that quick cooking time can sometimes end up rubbery and just plain overdone.
That’s one, of many reasons, I think this stir-fry was such a hit with my family. The beef is cooked as a whole steak, and then sliced up and added to the veggies and sauce for serving, so you can control how well done your steak is. We like things a little bit pink over here, so I went for medium-rare. The girls like things a little more well done, though, so the thinner ends of the flank steak worked out perfectly.
I started by prepping all of my veggies and sauce. Stir fries are quick to cook, but the key in their “simplicity” is making sure that everything is completely prepped before diving in.
I cut up some broccoli into small florets, thinly sliced an onion, used my vegetable peeler to grab a handful of orange zest strips off of an orange, sliced up a few cloves of garlic, and then I whisked together my sauce ingredients. The sauce included some beef stock, orange juice, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, cornstarch, and crushed red pepper flakes.
Then, I got my steak ready. I had a pound of flank steak that I rubbed generously with five-spice powder, salt, and pepper.
I seared it in a hot pan for about five minutes on each side.
When the steak was done to my liking, I removed it to a plate and covered it with foil to keep it warm, and to let it set up a bit before slicing.
I added a bit more oil to the hot pan, and added in my broccoli, onion, garlic, and the orange rind. I stir fried the mixture for about three minutes, until the broccoli just started to soften and the veggies began to brown and caramelize a bit on the edges, and then I added in my sauce mixture.
While the sauce was finishing up, I sliced my flank steak, which was perfectly tender and just the right shade of pink.
I heaped some of the saucy broccoli-orange mixture over some steamed white rice, and topped that with a few slices of the five-spice beef. Then, I finished off the dish with some sliced green onions and sesame seeds, and we were ready to dig in!
It was just as simple as any other stir fry out there, but tasted just that much more fresh and flavorful. The beef had the perfect amount of spice, and since it wasn’t all cooked together with the same flavors, each bite was something new, fresh, and delicious. It’s a busy night keeper!
FIVE-SPICE ORANGE BEEF AND BROCCOLI
Adapted from Cooking Light
- 1 lb. flank steak, fat trimmed off
- 3/4 tsp. five-spice powder
- 3/4 tsp. black pepper
- 1/4 tsp. kosher salt
- 2 Tbsp. peanut oil (or canola)
- 2 cups fresh broccoli florets
- 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced onion
- 8 (1-inch) strips orange rind
- 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1/2 cup beef stock
- 3 Tbsp. orange juice
- 3 Tbsp. hoisin sauce
- 1 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
- 2 tsp. rice vinegar
- 1 tsp. cornstarch
- 3/4 tsp. crushed red pepper (or less, if you want less of a kick)
- cooked white rice, for serving
- 1/2 cup sliced green onions
- 2 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
- Mix together the five-spice powder, salt , and pepper. Rub the mixture evenly over the steak.
- Combine the beef stock, orange juice, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, rice vinegar, cornstarch, and red pepper in a small bowl. Set aside
- Heat 1 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over high heat. Swirl to coat. Add the steak to the pan and cook 4-5 minutes on each side, until well browned. Remove steak to a plate and cover with foil until you’re ready to slice it.
- Return the pan to the heat. Add the remaining 1 tbsp. of oil. Add the broccoli, onion, garlic and orange rind. Stir fry for 3 minutes, or until the edges begin to brown and veggies begin to soften.
- Add the sauce mixture to the pan, and simmer the veggies are crisp tender and the sauce has thickened just a bit.
- Slice the beef across the grain into thin slices.
- Serve the broccoli and sauce over white rice, and top with some of the beef. Sprinkle with sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds.