An everyday stirfry

February 5, 2014

Stir fry R us.

Stir fry R us.

One of the things about getting a quarter of a beef is that you find yourself rummaging about in the freezer, coming up with a cut of meat you wouldn’t normally buy at the grocery, and thinking, “H’mm. Now what?”

I was rummaging in just that fashion t’other day, and I came out with a piece of top sirloin steak. Now, top sirloin is not typically a steak I buy. If I want a steak to grill, I’m going to go with a porterhouse, a ribeye or a filet. I’ve tried top sirloin, and it generally doesn’t have a great flavor like a ribeye or a porterhouse, nor is it as tender as a filet, so I typically pass it up.

But here it was. So I fetched it inside, went to the interwebs, and commenced looking at ways to prepare it.

I saw a miso-ginger marinade that looked good. Its preparation suggestion was to grill it and then slice it thinly and serve it with Asian vegetables.

Hell, sez I. I’ll just make a stir-fry.

So I mixed up the marinade, plopped the steak in it, and betook myself to the grocery, being that I was out of everything. Among the everything, I scooped up a zucchini, a yellow squash, and a couple of crowns of broccoli, along with a bag of carrots and another of onions, and a handful of snow peas, just on general principles.

Come prep time, I peeled and sliced four good-sized carrots on the diagonal, and chopped up a small onion; threw those in the skillet to soften and caramelize a bit. Cut the steak on the diagonal, across the grain, into strips about a half-inch by about 3 inches, and tossed them in; followed them in a bit with the squashes,  peas and broccoli. Let that sizzle away happily while I put some brown rice in the rice cooker, being that I had forgotten to do that.

Since I had forgotten to do that, I turned the heat off under the stir-fry for a bit and moved it to a cold part of the stove. A few minutes later, to let the rice catch up, I fired it back up and finished cooking everything. Finished it off by drizzling with the remaining marinade, which made a nice sauce.

Could’ve used some mushrooms and water chestnuts, both of which I forgot to get at the grocery, but we pronounced it good. Child A was particularly enamoured. I had forgotten how much a bit of meat stretches in that prep; I easily had enough for four, maybe six if they weren’t horribly hungry, from a tad over a pound of meat.

The marinade recipe, as nearly as I can remember it:

  • 2 tbsp miso paste
  • 3 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger root
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • white pepper and garlic powder, a pinch or so each

I whisked all that up together — it makes a thick marinade — and put about half of it in the bottom of an 8 x 8 baking dish. Plopped the steak down in it, and poured the rest on top, covered it with plastic wrap and stashed it in the fridge. It marinated for about four or five hours.

Grated ginger tip: I keep my ginger in the freezer, and grate it on my microplane grater. A chunk of root keeps a long time, long as its sealed tightly in a plastic bag, and grates while it’s frozen. Take it out, grate off what you what, put it back.

This is a good all-purpose Asian-style marinade that would work on chicken, fish, pork, or whatever.  I suspect you could make it up in sizeable quantities and keep it in the fridge for a good while. It would be a good thing for you ‘n y’mama ‘n ’em to have around.


One Response to “An everyday stirfry”

  1. cleavelin Says:

    The marinade would make a good wok sauce, for that matter.

    (Instead of marinading the meat for a few hours, you stir fry it, remove from wok, stir fry the veggies separately (certain veggies take longer to get “done” than others, so you stir fry them separately or in batches with similar frying times), then combine the meat and all veggies, add the wok sauce/marinade, and then heat it all up a bit and coat with the wok sauce.)

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