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How to Make Authentic Sichuan Boiled Beef

Sichuan boiled beef is named as such because the beef slices in the dish are blanched in a spicy broth. According to the "Records of Sichuan Cuisine", this famous Sichuan dish originated from the salt production industry in Zigong City, Sichuan Province.

During the Ming and Qing dynasties in China, the salt fields in Zigong used oxen to pull carts and draw brine. As the number of salt wells increased and the carts became larger, the number of oxen also increased. During the reign of Emperor Guangxu (1875-1908 AD) in the Qing Dynasty, the number of oxen maintained at around 30,000 throughout the year.

"Sichuan boiled beef" is an authentic dish from the "Yanbang" cuisine, which is well-known as a typical Sichuan cuisine. Yanbang cuisine from Zigong is characterized by its rich and bold flavors.

Cooking Method
Cuisine
Courses , ,
Difficulty Intermediate
Time
Prep Time: 30 min Cook Time: 10 min Total Time: 40 mins
Servings 2
Description

"Sichuan boiled beef" is known for its rich and spicy flavor, tender texture, and intense aroma. It embodies the characteristic flavors of Sichuan hot pot - numbing, spicy, and piping hot.

Ingredients
    Main Ingredients
  • 250 grams beef tenderloin
  • 150 grams stem lettuce
  • 30 grams Pixian Doubanjiang
  • Sizzle Ingredients
  • 2 grams chili powder
  • 20 grams minced garlic
  • 1 gram sichuan peppercorn powder
  • 10 grams chopped green onion
  • Beef Marinate Ingredients
  • 20 grams cornstarch
  • 50 grams clean water
  • 6 grams salt
  • 1 gram baking soda
  • 5 grams cooking oil
Instructions
  1. Thinly slice the beef tenderloin, then coat it with starch, salt, and water.

  2. Mix well, allowing the water to be absorbed by the beef.

  3. Add baking soda, then mix well again.

  4. Add baking soda, then mix well again.

  5. Pour a bit more oil into the wok, about 20g more than usual for stir-frying vegetables, then add Pixian Doubanjiang to stir-fry until the oil turns red.

  6. Add water, approximately filling about half of the wok. Once the water boils, add the stem lettuce and blanch until cooked, then remove from the wok.

  7. Once the water boils again, add the beef slices in batches. When the beef changes color, pour in the starch sauce to thicken the broth. Then, it's ready to serve.

    It's important not to pour all the beef into the wok at once, as it will cause the meat to become tough. Avoid cooking them for too long, beef slices cook very quickly. Once they change color, they're almost done in about 10 seconds.
  8. Pour the beef slices and broth over the cooked lettuce.

  9. Garnish with chopped green onions, minced garlic, chili powder, and Sichuan peppercorn powder.

    According to personal preference, you can reduce the amount of chili powder and substitute chopped green onions with cilantro.
  10. Drizzle hot oil over the chopped green onions, minced garlic, chili powder, and Sichuan peppercorn powder that you just sprinkled. Now, please enjoy your meal.

    Heat the oil until it smokes, then it's hot enough for pouring.
Note
  1. The choice of beef is crucial. It's best to select meat that is lean, skinless, fat-free, and without tendons. Choosing tenderloin would result in a more tender texture. Slicing the meat thinly would also enhance its tenderness.
  2. In addition to lettuce, you can also add any vegetables you like as the base. Chinese people often use bean sprouts, celery, tofu skin, enoki mushrooms, wood ear mushrooms, etc. Needle-shaped greens are mainly used.
  3. The beef slices should be evenly and thinly cut. Once the beef changes color after being added to the wok, it should be removed promptly. If heated for too long, the meat will become tough.
  4. If pork is used as the main ingredient, it is called "Boiled pork slices".
Keywords: Sichuan Cuisine, Spicy and Savory, Beef