Chinese Tiger Salad & Stir Fried Beef with Black Pepper and Basil

I wish that I could take credit for the recipes below. I really, really do. Especially the salad. It takes a lot for me to love salad, so that should tell you something.

Recently, I ordered a copy of John Gregory-Smith’s Mighty Spice online and it finally arrived. I’ve cooked recipes from this book many times with my parents and they have always been simple but flavorful. I wrote a bit more about the book here and I would highly recommend this book for any home cook who’s trying to add some more spice to his or her repertoire.

The two recipes below came together in no time and were absolutely delicious. I made a few minor changes as noted, but otherwise stayed true to the book. The salad has a good amount of heat, I seemed to have bought some extra spicy chilis, and I could have eaten the whole bowl! My one critique is the portion size on the beef which we found to be closer to 3 portions, not 4.

Chinese Tiger Salad & Stir Fried Beef with Black Pepper and Basil

For the Salad:

  • 6 scallions, finely sliced on a diagonal
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 2 baby leeks, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced (I actually used regular leeks and it was just fine)
  • 2 large handfuls cilantro leaves, finely chopped (I omitted this as the store was out)
  • 1 red chili, thinly sliced
  • sesame seeds, to serve

For the Dressing:

  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds
  • 1/2 tsp red chili flakes

For the Beef:

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil (I used EVOO)
  • 1 pound 2 oz beef tenderloin, thinly sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1″ piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • a pinch of sugar
  • 1 tbsp light soy sauce (I used regular)
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 large handful basil leaves, roughly torn

For the salad, simply combine all of the ingredients in a large serving bowl. In a smaller bowl, whisk together the ingredients for the dressing. Pour the dressing over the salad just before serving and toss well.

To prepare the beef, heat the oil in a wok over high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the beef and stir fry for just 1-2 minutes. Add the garlic, ginger, pepper, and stir fry for just another minute. Finally, add the sugar, soy sauce, balsamic and basil. Mix well and serve.

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