Beef & Broccoli {Take-Out-At-Home}

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I need a wok. Seriously. With the amount of Asian food that I make it amazes me that I do not own one. Someday.

My dad however has one, so we put it to use one night and made some gluten-free beef and broccoli. My dad is awesome for many reasons, but I love how good he is about gluten-free awareness and cross contamination. He even has a separate peanut butter jar just for me so I don’t get sick when I am there. He keeps gluten-free bread and goodies in his freezer for me as well. Like I said, he is pretty awesome.

Who doesn’t love a quick easy version of one of your take-out favorites?! I know not all of the ingredients below are traditionally what is found in beef & broccoli but it tastes pretty darn good. There are a bunch of other beef & broccoli recipes out there on the web, and I really wanted to make something simple yet flavorful. Hope you all give it a shot and enjoy it.

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Beef & Broccoli

  • 1 pound beef – tenderloin cut into 1/4 inch slices
  • 1-2 medium heads of broccoli cut into florets
  • 1 1/2 inches of ginger peeled and sliced or grated
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil (or oil of your choice)
  • Boiling Water (for broccoli)
  • Bowl of ice water

Marinade

  • 1 tablespoon gluten-free soy sauce (San-J reduced sodium)
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar (Marukan)
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons potato starch (you can use corn or tapioca)
  • 1/8 teaspoon of pepper

Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce (San-J reduced sodium)
  • 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce (Dynasty Brand)
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar (white or brown)
  • 2 teaspoons of potato starch (you can use corn or tapioca)
  • 1/4 cup cold water
  • 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes (adjust as needed or omit)

Method of Preparation

  • Slice beef and set aside
  • In a medium bowl combine all ingredients in the marinade and add beef. Marinade for 30 minutes.
  • In a large stock pot bring water to boil, and blanch the broccoli florets – about 10-15 seconds and remove with a slotted spoon.
  • Immediately place blanched broccoli in ice water to stop the cooking process.
  • Repeat with remaining broccoli. Once all broccoli is blanched and then placed in an ice bath, strain and pat dry. Set aside.
  • In a wok or large skillet heat 1 tablespoon of oil over high heat. Add half o the beef and cooking until about 75-80% cooked throughout (this will be quick at high heat).
  • Remove from pan and set aside. Repeat with remaining oil and steak.
  • Add ginger and red pepper flakes, stir-fry for 30 seconds – 1 minute.
  • Return the beef to the pan to finish cooking. Add broccoli and stir fry for 1 minute
  • Add sauce and toss to coat – as soon as the sauce begins to thicken remove from the heat.
  • Serve with steamed rice – white or brown.
  • Enjoy!

 

 

Weekly Menu Planning

I’m determined to get back into planning out a weekly menu and base our grocery shopping on that menu.  I hope that this will save us money but also the frustration of what to eat each night.  This week is a very Asian inspired week as you’ll see below.  I really miss my favorite little Chinese restaurant in Monterey, Full Moon.  They were so great to me, I would bring them a bottle of gluten-free soy sauce and they would make my food with that. We have both been craving Chinese food lately and Bryan could go out and get some but I can’t so I figured I would make a few Asian inspired recipes this week that will hopefully hit the spot.

When planning weekly menus I usually look at my cookbooks, blogs etc and search for dishes that are tasty, easy and that the ingredients can be used in more than one dish during the week.  This weeks menu inspiration comes from: Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking, Everyday Food-Fresh Flavor Fast and a few recipes I found online.

November 29-December 5

Monday

Grilled Steaks, mashed sweet potatoes and corn (these were our last steaks from Omaha Steaks -a gift from Bry’s parents)

Tuesday

P.F. Chang’s inspired Beef A La Sichuan (Bryan’s favorite dish to order there, even off of the gluten-free menu)

Wednesday

Asian Inspired Noodle Bowl (Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking pg. 30)

Thursday

Beef Stir Fry (Everyday Food Fresh Flavor Fast pg. 190)

Friday

Penne A La Broccoli (Light dish with red pepper flakes from DrWeil.com)

Saturday

General Chang’s Chicken (Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking pg. 163) I’ll be making this for my birthday dinner along with some cupcakes, or maybe even a cheesecake…I have yet to decided which one I really want.

Sunday

Not 100% sure what to make just yet for sunday, maybe some beef stew or pot roast.

If you haven’t picked up a copy of the Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking cookbook by Kelli and Peter Bronski you really should – this cookbook is fantastic.  I’ve made several of their recipes and have enjoyed every one of them.

What are you cooking this week?

Getting Setteled with some Spicy Orange Chicken

Well we are here….finally!  At some points I wasn’t sure if it was ever really going to happen.  I move out of my apartment in Monterey on June 1st, moved in with some great friends, flew to New Jersey on July 9th and we moved into our condo in Rhode Island on July 31st.  I have been living out of suitcases for two months and was beyond ready to be here and unpack.  The move went very smoothly thanks to all of the help that we had! The unpacking wasn’t so bad either.  It was so much fun combining our things and styles, finding places for everything and getting to hang our artwork up (we are both Photographers).  My favorite part of our new place is the built-in bookshelves that house our camera collection. See Photos at the end of this post:)

We are starting to find our way around Portsmouth, Newport and Bristol.  We live between two vineyards (that we hope to try really soon).  One a mile East and one a mile South of our condo!  Today we visited the farmer’s market that is held at one of the vineyards every Saturday.  It’s a bit small compared to the one in Monterey but it’s awesome!  I found a few stands that had some gluten-free items, not many but it’s a start at least.  We even found a stand that had fresh edamame right on the stalk/branch still!!

Sadly though I haven’t had a chance to do too much baking/cooking but I’m getting there.  I need to find a job still so much of my free time has been spent searching for a job in this not so great economy!  I’m very used to working in higher education but at this point I will take any job that comes my way, including working at a grocery store, bookstore etc…you name it and I’ll pretty much do it as long as we have money coming in.  This whole gluten-free lifestyle, food, flours etc. are just so expensive.  So once I get a job and have some money coming in I’ll be able to stock up on all my gluten-free flours but until them I am searching for recipes to make with the little that I have. Growing up money was tight very often so my mom was great at making meals that would go the distance and either last a while or you could make those leftovers into a completely different meal.

My first big meal was my grandmother’s gravy and meatballs, which I froze a good amount of it for later use and we ate that for about three nights in a row!  We stocked up on gluten-free sandwich meat, chicken breast, hot Italian sausage and a few other things at B.J.’s.  Of course we had Bryan’s favorite – Sweet and Spicy Chicken one night too.  Yesterday I realized I had about a half a cup of brown rice flour left so I decided to make Bryan a little treat, some yummy gluten-free brownies.  I was getting a bit frustrated today because every time I thought of a recipe to make tonight for dinner or something to bake I was short by either one or two (simple) ingredients.  I’m not used to not having certain things in my house anymore, like yeast, rice vinegar, ginger, vanilla extract etc…really simple things but we just haven’t had a chance to buy them just yet.  So we broke down today and picked them up.  I’m very excited to be able to make some bread next week!!

Tonight I decided to make another meal that is great to freeze, has lots of flavor and makes great leftovers.  Spicy Orange Chicken Stir-fry from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food Magazine (Issue #50, March 2008 pages 80-81).  My only suggestion would to be use a little less orange juice than it calls for, but that is just me…

Spicy Orange Chicken Stir-fry

1/3 Cup Cornstarch

2 Cups Orange Juice (see above…I would use about 1 1/2 cups instead)

1/2 Cup Gluten-Free Soy Sauce (recipe calls for regular)

1/2 Cup Rice Vinegar

1/4 Cup Honey

4 Garlic Cloves, Minced

1 to 2 Teaspoons Red-Pepper Flakes (I used 2)

Coarse Salt

1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil

3 Pounds Boneless, Skinless Chicken Breasts, Cut Crosswise  into 1/2 Inch-Wide Strips

1 Head Broccoli, Cut Into Florets, Stalks Peeled and Thinly Sliced

1 Pound Carrots (about 5), Peeled and Thinly Sliced on the Diagonal

Cooked Rice for serving

  • Place cornstarch in a medium bowl.  Gradually whisk in orange juice until smooth.  Whisk in soy sauce, vinegar, honey, garlic and red-pepper flakes; season with salt. Set mixture aside.
  • In a 5-quart nonstick Dutch oven or pot, heat oil over medium-high heat.  Working in batches, cook chicken on the one side until slightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes; transfer to a plate, and set aside (chicken will cook more later).
  • Add broccoli, carrots, and 1/2 cup water to pot.  Cook, partially covered, until water has evaporated and broccoli is bright green, 3 minutes.  Add reserved chicken and cornstarch mixture; bring to a boil.  Cook until chicken is opaque throughout and sauce has thickened, 2 to 3 minutes.  Serve stir-fry over rice.

Additional Suggestions:

Add any of the following vegetables: edamame, snap peas, cauliflower

To Freeze:

Prepare through step 3, omitting rice; cool to room temperature.  Freeze 1 1/2 cup servings in airtight containers.

To Cook From Frozen:

Run container(s) under hot water to release frozen stir-fry.  Place in a medium saucepan with 1/2 cup water per serving.  Cover and heat over medium high, stirring occasionally, until heated through, 10 to 12 minutes.

To see more photos of our place please check out my Flickr Page: Mia Cara Photography