This is one of those recipes that’s a spin-off from the conventional style of Chinese beef stir fry. A smart combination of Balsamic Vinegar and Honey result a tasty and tangy coated beef alongside with crunchy sticky walnuts. The beef is also infused with Chinese 5 spice – which admittedly not everyone’s cup of tea but this recipe calls for only a little so you can barely taste it. Not only it looks pretty on the camera because of the luscious caramelized coated nuts and beef, it tasted delicious too. After much deliberation, I think I am going to categorized this dish as a continental dish, because in my opinion it is not a traditional Chinese stir fry and the usage of vinaigrette and honey comes from a European/Western pantry.
- 10 oz beef sirloin, or lean beef, partially frozen (easier to slice)
- 2 Tablespoon cornstarch
- 1 Tablespoon water
- 1 egg
- 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
- 1 cup walnut pieces
- 1 green capsicum sliced thinly
- Oil for frying (about 2 Tablespoon)
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
- 2 teaspoon ginger juice
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- Using a sharp knife, cut the partially frozen beef in thin slices.
- In a bowl, combine the cornstarch, water, egg, soy sauce, and five-spice powder. Whisk to combine the mixture thoroughly, as cornstarch has a tendency to clump up, so whisk till smooth.
- Add the beef strips to the egg mix and toss to coat evenly. Set aside to marinate. (This can be done a few hours ahead or you can let it marinate for just a few minutes).
- To make the sauce, combine the honey, rice vinegar, ginger, balsamic vinegar and salt in a bowl and set aside.
- Heat up oil in a frying pan/wok. When the oil is hot, slowly add the beef strips and stir to separate them. Cook until lightly browned, about 2-3 minutes. Remove the beef with a slotted spoon, allowing the oil to drip for a few moments. Transfer beef to a plate
- Add walnuts and capsicum to the hot oil and fry for about a minute or so, until crispy. I used use a stainless steel flat spatula to stir them, then scrape any browned bits that may have formed on the bottom of the skillet from the beef. Drain and transfer the walnuts to the plate with the beef.
- Bring oil to medium heat and add the honey sauce. Simmer for 15 seconds or so or until slightly thickened and looks like a glaze. I like to scrape any remaining browned bits so it combines with the sauce.
- Add the reserved beef and walnuts, and stir until evenly glazed, about 3-5 minutes.