Chinese Food In Minutes

Chongqing beef

A must for spice lovers, using dried chillies and Sichuan peppercorns.

Chongqing beef

Serves 2–4 to share
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook in: 5 minutes

You’re not meant to consume the dried chillies in this dish; they are there to impart their spiciness. I have used long dried Sichuan chillies and Sichuan peppercorns – for chilli lovers, this is a must!

INGREDIENTS
1 tablespoon groundnut oil
250g/9oz beef fillet, sliced widthways into strips
1 tablespoon Shaohsing rice wine or dry sherry
1 tablespoon chilli bean paste
2 tablespoons Sichuan peppercorns
1 large handful of long dried chillies
1 tablespoon Chinkiang black rice vinegar or balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
a dash of toasted sesame oil
a dash of chilli oil
1 handful of dry roasted peanuts
1 small handful of fresh coriander, finely chopped (optional; see Ching’s Tip); egg-fried rice and vegetables to serve

METHOD
• Heat a wok over a high heat and add the groundnut oil. When the oil starts to smoke, add the beef slices and stir-fry for 30 seconds. As the meat starts to turn brown, add the rice wine or sherry.
• Season the beef with the chilli bean paste and stir well, then add the Sichuan peppercorns and dried chillies and stir-fry on a medium heat for 1 minute. Season with the vinegar and soy sauce, then take off the heat and add a drizzle of sesame oil and chilli oil. Sprinkle with the peanuts, and the coriander, if you like.
• Transfer to a serving plate, serve with egg-fried rice and vegetables and eat immediately.

Ching's Tip
• The fresh coriander adds a cooling note, fragrance and a bit of a break in-between the ‘hits’ of chilli, but it’s optional.