Stir-fries are some of my favourite foods both to cook and eat. They are tasty, incorporate vegetables without extra cooking and are quick to make. They are just about perfect for work night meals. You could eat them without carbs and up the sauce and veggies to make a great one pot meal. Plus they are usually easy peasy to reduce to a meal for one. The one down side is that because the meat is usually sliced so thin that it often overcooks if you try and reheat, meaning leftovers are not ideal but still edible.
I am not a very original stir-fry cook. I have my standard ingredients that I use with the decision as to what to use limited by what is in my kitchen. But they are not very exciting stir-fries. This summer I want to find a range of new and exciting stir-fries to try. I also want to diversify the range of veggies I am eating. Each veggie has such a unique set of vitamins and other good stuff that I feel I am really missing out on eating as well as I should be.
And this recipe for five spice, hoisin beef with vegetables by Emily of Fuss Free Cooking ticks all those boxes. To me the five spice adds that secret Chinese takeaway flavor to this beef and I love the magical combination of sweet and salty in hoisin sauce.
The recipe uses asparagus and sugar snaps as the vegetables. I couldn’t find sugar snaps so went with some snow peas. Asparagus has never been a favourite of mine. There is something about the smell that does not agree with me. But I liked it in this stir-fry – the spices perhaps hid the smell. I also think it helped that I bought baby asparagus so it was lovely and fresh and not too woody. Sometimes asparagus can be a bit on the chewy side but not this baby asparagus. Asparagus is in season here in Australia – eating in season makes such a difference to the taste of vegetables.
I served my dinner with rice as the beef needed 20 minutes to marinate – you can get the rice on and cooking while everything is marinating and then zip through the cooking of the beef.
To make this for one I used the following ingredients:
- 1 tsp grated ginger
- ½ tsp of minced garlic
- 150g beef, sliced thinly (if taking beef out of the freezer, it is easier to slice while still slightly frozen)
- 1/4 tsp + a pinch salt
- 1/2 tsp sesame oil
- 1/4 tsp five spice powder
- Black pepper to taste
- 1 tsp of vegetable oil
- 50g of asparagus, trimmed & sliced diagonally
- 40g snow peas, trimmed
- 1 tbs hoisin sauce
- 3tbs water
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- Toasted sesame seeds as garnish (sort of optional but much nicer with!)
Preparation is about 30 minutes but that includes the 20 minutes marinating time for the beef when you can get the rice cooked. Once you have finished marinating, cook time is about 8-10 minutes. I cooked the beef initially for a couple of minutes and my vegetables took another couple of minutes to soften and go a lovely bright green. The dish has about 425 calories in it.