Cantonese Sweet-and-Sour Beef
The sweet-and-sour dishes of Canton are among the most familiar types of Chinese food. They are said to have evolved in response to the demanding tastes of the foreigners in the port city.
8 ounces beef top round steak
1 (15.5-ounce) can pineapple chunks
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon packed brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil
1 medium green bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 small onion, cut into thin wedges
1 small orange, peeled and sectioned
Orange slices for garnish (optional)
Hot cooked rice for accompaniment (optional)
- Trim fat from meat. (At this point you can partially freeze meat to make slicing easier.) Thinly slice across the grain into bite-size strips. Set aside.
- For sauce, drain pineapple, reserving juice. Pour 1/2 cup of the reserved juice into a small bowl. (Reserve remaining juice for another use.) Stir in the vinegar, soy sauce, cornstarch, brown sugar and ground red pepper. Set aside.
- Add oil to wok or large skillet. Preheat over medium-high heat (add more oil if necessary during cooking). Stir-fry green pepper and onion in hot oil for 3 to 4 minutes or until crisp-tender. Remove the vegetables from wok.
- Add meat to wok. Stir-fry for 2 to 3 minutes or to desired doneness. Push meat from center of wok. Stir sauce; add to center of wok. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly.
- Return cooked vegetables to wok. Add pineapple chunks. Stir all ingredients together to coat. Cook and stir about 2 minutes more or until heated through. Stir in orange sections.
- Serve immediately over hot cooked rice. If desired, garnish with orange slices.
Makes 4 servings.