Savory Beef Stir-Fry with Pickled Mustard Delight

In the realm of comfort food, Cantonese culinary magic introduces the beef stir-fry with pickled mustard greens. Merging haam choy, succulent beef, and sweet bell peppers, this dish guarantees a fusion that’s both straightforward to craft and utterly delectable.

Crafting Pickled Mustard Greens from Scratch

Although many conveniently snag pre-packaged pickled mustard greens from Chinese supermarkets, there’s something undeniably special about homemade variants. My lineage has passed down the art of crafting gallons of haam choy using lush mustard greens. Traditionally, beef or even chicken is used to rustle up this authentic stir-fry treat.

The Unique Flavor Fusion

What we affectionately dub as haam choy or “salted vegetable” is a blend that’s more than its name. My grandmother’s secret formula infuses salt, sugar, vinegar, and generous amounts of ginger. If pickles fascinate your taste buds, this dish is a culinary adventure you shouldn’t miss. I often switch my regular beef stir-fry choices for this Beef and Haam Choy for a refreshing change.


For Beef & Its Marinade:

  • 12 ounces flank steak (sliced meticulously against the grain)
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 teaspoons oyster sauce
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil

For the Main Dish:

  • 3-4 ginger slices (smashed after cutting into 1/4-inch thick slices)
  • 8 ounces pickled mustard greens (sliced into 1/2-inch by 1-inch strips)
  • 2 garlic cloves (sliced)
  • 2 scallions (angled cuts into 1 1/2 inch sections; separate smashed white and 2-inch long green parts)
  • 1/2 cup red bell pepper (chopped to bite-sized chunks)
  • 2/3 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 teaspoon light soy sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil (partitioned)
  • 2 teaspoons Shaoxing wine
  • Cornstarch slurry (1 1/2 teaspoons mixed with 1 tablespoon water)

Steps to Culinary Bliss

  1. Mix beef slices with marinade ingredients. Let it mingle for 30 minutes or let it sit overnight for an intensified flavor.
  2. Prep the ginger, mustard greens, garlic, scallions, and bell pepper. Create the sauce using chicken broth, sugar, pepper, oyster sauce, soy sauce, and sesame oil.
  3. With your wok smoky hot, drizzle 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil. Add beef and let each side sear for a minute. Once done, set the beef aside.
  4. On medium heat, introduce a tablespoon of oil and ginger. Post 15 seconds, pitch in the mustard greens for a half-minute stir-fry.
  5. Amplify the heat. Toss in garlic, white scallion parts, and bell peppers. Stir for a minute.
  6. Introduce the Shaoxing wine and blend for another half-minute.
  7. Pour in the sauce mix, combining well. Let it simmer for a minute or two.
  8. Slide in the beef and scallion greens. Stir for about half a minute.
  9. Thicken using cornstarch slurry. Adjust to your desired consistency. After 20-30 seconds of stirring, it’s ready to be paired with steamed rice.

Why Pickled Mustard Greens?

Pickled mustard greens aren’t just a flavorful addition; they’re also rich in vitamins and fiber. Their salty and tangy taste can transform plain dishes into gourmet meals. Moreover, the pickling process enhances the longevity of the vegetable, ensuring you always have a ready-to-use ingredient on hand. This traditional ingredient adds depth and an umami punch to dishes, making them memorable. Try incorporating them in other recipes too, and discover the magic they weave!

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