Chilli Beef on Rice

9/19/2013 11:27:00 PM

Chilli Beef on Rice

So... "weather". Am I right guys? It suddenly got cold and rainy again this week, and I wanted something comforting and warming for dinner. I was also feeling a bit fluey and rundown, so certainly did not want to be going out to the supermarket after I got home from work. I had peas and minced beef in the freezer, and a whole lotta Chinese sauces in the pantry. And bang, dinner was born.

During the day, I had the idea of flavouring the minced beef with my beloved Sichuanese chilli bean sauce, (although I know Fuchsia Dunlop would say the Cantonese Lee Kum Kee brand is terribly inauthentic), but wasn't quite sure what proportions to use, or what other flavourings I'd need. Then I remembered that Nigella has a recipe for Korean keema in Kitchen - minced turkey, cooked with Korean gochujang chilli sauce and other flavourings, and I thought that would be a good place to start. (Incidentally, I've never tried gochujang but if it has, as Nigella says, "a liquorice intensity", I assume that I wouldn't like it, hehe.)

Chilli Bean Sauce, Shao Hsing rice wine, soy sauce, marinating minced beef

I used Nigella's proportions of sauce flavourings, replacing her gochujang with my Sichuanese chilli sauce and reducing the soy (undersalted food can be adjusted, oversalted food is a waste). I also (obviously) used minced beef instead of the minced turkey she suggests. I used a red onion instead of spring onions, as I didn't have any to hand, and at the end of cooking I added black vinegar to balance the flavours, and added potato flour to give the sauce a lovely glossy thickness.

Caramelising onions

I was so pleased with this dinner - the sauce had a gentle warm spiciness, with a nice touch of slightly crisp caramelization on the mince from the honey in the sauce. It's also a bonus, in terms of the comfort factor, if you can eat dinner with just a spoon. It also only took about half an hour, from start to finish, including cooking the rice. Comforting spicy deliciousness in record time. Win!

Chilli beef on rice

Chilli Beef on Rice
Recipe adapted from Nigella's Korean Keema, from Kitchen

2 tablespoons Sichuanese chilli bean sauce (Toban Djan)
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon honey
3 tablespoons Chinese rice wine (Shao Hsing)
250 grams minced beef
125 grams frozen peas
1 tablespoon peanut oil
1/2 a red onion, finely sliced
4 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon potato flour
1/2 teaspoon Chinkiang black vinegar

Whisk together the chilli bean sauce, soy sauce, honey and 1 tablespoon of the rice wine. Mix this sauce through the minced beef and allow to marinate while you continue with the recipe.
Place the frozen peas into a sieve, and pour hot water from the kettle over them to defrost.
Heat the oil in a wok or saucepan, then add the red onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and golden brown. Tip in the defrosted peas and stir to combine.
Add the minced beef and all the sauce to the pan, stirring to break up the meat. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until the beef is cooked through.
Place the 4 tablespoons water, remaining 2 tablespoons Chinese rice wine and potato flour into the bowl that was holding the beef. Whisk to combine and then pour into the pan. Stir through, and allow to cook for a further minute or so, until the sauce is thickened and glossy. Off the heat, stir in the black vinegar.
Serve with steamed rice.
Serves 2 -3

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  1. Sandra11:33 PM

    I can confirm that this is a delicious dinner!

  2. Funnily enough, my dad used to cook a dish like this quite often when I was growing up, but he would omit the chilli sauce and make a kind of Chinese-style gravy instead. This brings back fond memories!

  3. Love the combination of flavours in this - yes I pulled out the slow cooker yesterday - so much for spring sunshine!

  4. This looks like a big bowl of awesome. I'll be making this one soon I hope!

  5. Ooh all that chilli and sauce sounds delicious! It looks like the perfect jaffle filling too! :D

  6. What a delicious and homey recipe for the cold weather. It looks delicious!!

  7. Hmmm yum!! I want to just eat that chilli sauce by the spoonful hehe I'm not a huge fan of rice ~ and funny enough i'm chinese hhahah

  8. This is definitely my kind of dinner! Love anything with Chinese vinegar!

  9. The best dinners are eaten with a spoon IMO :))

  10. Chilli beef! And it's on rice! Now this is a full meal!



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