Broccoli Beef

Who knew homemade Chinese food was so simple and delicious? I’m a big fan of the little boxes take-out Chinese comes in, but I generally stick to chicken dishes when ordering out because the “steak” always looks a little off to me. I’ve had a hankerin’ for some broccoli beef for a while now and decided to give it a whirl. So. Easy. Mouthwateringly good too.

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Just a few simple ingredients to get started. We got a Kindle Fire for Christmas – it’s my new go-to on-the-counter recipe book. Love it!

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Start by slicing up a boneless round into thin strips. I totally felt like a Benihana chef while I was doing this. Sharp knife is a must, and be sure to cut across the grain.

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I used real fresh ginger in this recipe because I think fresh is just so much better than dried. If you aren’t familiar with ginger, here’s what you’re looking for.

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You peel off the outter (ugly) part with a paring knife and you’re left with something like this.

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Then you grate it up over a microplane zester. It comes out almost like a paste.

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Add the ginger to some soy sauce, brown sugar and garlic (and if you want, some red pepper flakes for heat). Then we get the meat soaking in a the marinade – just for a few minutes while you chop up the rest of your ingredients.

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A whole load of broccoli and an onion, sliced into wedges.

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Get a big pan hot with a little oil, and using tongs, drain as much liquid as you can from the meat before getting it all into the pan to cook. Keep the bag with the marinade liquid in it – we’re going to use it later. It’s very important that you don’t over do the meat. Just a little “hi there, how are ya’?” to the heat, and then off to a bowl covered in some foil to stay warm. Your steak is cut really thinly, so it doesn’t take more than a couple of minutes.

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Put all the broccoli and the onion into the same pan (there will be some liquid left from the meat, leave it in there!). Cover and let it steam for about 4 minutes.

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Add some cornstarch and water to the remaining marinade and dump it into the pan along with the warm meat. Stir it around until it’s all covered and the sauce has thickened slightly. Serve over rice.

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Mmmmmmm. Better than any take-out ever! Full of flavor, tender steak and perfectly steamed veggies. Yum yum yum!

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Broccoli Beef
adapted from

1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon water
1 lb boneless round steak or 1 lb charcoal chuck steaks, cut into thin 3-inch strips
1 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 cups broccoli florets
1 medium onion, cut into wedges
2/3 cup reduced sodium soy sauce
4 tablespoons brown sugar
2 teaspoons grated ginger (about a 1 inch piece of fresh ginger)
2 cloves garlic, grated
hot cooked rice

  1. In a ziplock bag, combine soy sauce, brown sugar, ginger and garlic.
  2. Add beef and allow to marinade 20 minutes.
  3. In a large skillet or wok over medium high heat, stir-fry beef in 1 tablespoon oil until beef reaches desired doneness; remove and keep warm.
  4. Add broccoli and onion, cover and allow to cook for 4-5 minutes.
  5. Return beef to pan.
  6. Combine cornstarch and water and add to remaining marinade in the bag. Then add to the pan.
  7. Cook and stir for 2 minutes.
  8. Serve over rice.

Cheesy Vegetable Chowder

(happy sigh) This chowder is heavenly. Full of broccoli and cheese and deliciousness. I made it on a snow day recently and just in the nick of time. Right after I took it off the stove and headed out to shovel some snow (with my belly full and warm of this amazing soup), my sister and her 5 kiddos showed up at my door. Hungry. Cold. Without power for over 24 hours because of the storm and no phone line to call in advance. This chowder was on the table in a flash and gobbled down by all of them. The perfect thing to take the freezing edge off your day. Even if you haven’t trudged thru a foot of snow to get some! As a side note (total tangent!) – it is that same sister’s birthday today. Have a great day Jess!

French Chicken Broccoli Supreme

Are you sick of making casseroles with cream of *insert whatever has been creamed* soup? This broccoli chicken bake has a rich creamy sauce that you make yourself in just a few quick minutes. The taste is fantastic, similar to what you’d get with a condensed soup…but so much better. It has a crunchy buttery topping and is full of flavor. I have no idea what about this is “French”, but it is most certainly supreme. Supremely amazing and delicious. Enjoy!

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Vegetable and Four Cheese Stuffed Shells

Boy, the Italians sure know what they are doing with food. I could stay happily fed for the rest of my life with all the varieties of cheese, pasta and red sauce from that region. This by far my favorite vegetarian dinner. Full of spinach and broccoli and oozing with cheesy goodness wrapped in a pasta shell and smothered with rich tomato sauce. You could easily turn this into a lasagna by layering the cheese mixture with noodles and sauce. Or, mini individual  appetizers by layering it with wonton wrappers, and sauce in a muffin tin. All of them would be absolutely delicious! [Read more…]

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