Sunday, November 21, 2010

Mongolian Beef, a love affair

This picture was taken with my phone, so it's really not a great picture. It is Mongolian Beef from A Year of Slow Cooking, one of my favorite cooking blogs. The modifications I made are down at the bottom of this. Her blog is the only cooking blog I really follow, aside from TasteSpotting, which I don't consider a blog. I made the sauce and cut the flank steak at home, and then took it to Statt Bird's apartment, where I cornstarch'd the meat and then plopped in all in the slow cooker for about six hours. I stirred it far too often.

But my friend's apartment smelt like delicious slow cooking flank steak, garlic, onion, along with soy sauce, ginger, red pepper flakes, and more.  This was my third time making it, and it has never failed to amaze.  I also made a bed of white rice and steamed broccoli to go along with it, although I didn't make enough broccoli or rice. We didn't have a big enough pot for more than three cups of rice, and I had six heads of broccoli. A bird friend I wasn't expecting also came, and although we had more than enough meat (which I did not expect at all), we did not have enough sides for everyone to get as much as they wanted.

Overall, the Mongolian Beef was a success. One of my bird friends (who I believe I will dub Jujyfruits Bird. He'd understand.) had me send his girlfriend the recipe, and she assured me 'if he says that it's really good twice, then he really likes it.'

After dinner we were going to just play games and then I was going to make apple dumplings around 10 or so. We ended up going to a local game night and playing Killer Bunnies. The game made no sense, largely because the directions were far too complicated, and I didn't really enjoy it much at all. It also meant we didn't get home until 11, and I was in no mood to eat the dumplings at midnight or later, so we didn't do them. We may tonight.

Today, aside from going to Statt Bird's again, Boyfriend Bird and I are going to make pizza bagels (again), and do who knows what for dinner. My only goals for the day are to finish my writing for NaNoWriMo, make the dumplings, and take a shower when I am home. I'd like to also play some Fable, or do some reading, but. I know how my life gets out of control.

Thanksgiving this week! I am in charge of making appetizers for Mama Bird, although I will be at Boyfriend Bird's house before our Thanksgiving dinner. I will probably get her to try to slow cook things. I am becoming a slow cooking monster.

Mongolian Beef from A Year of Slow Cooking
(Serves 4+, approximately $12.25 per serving)

  • 1.5 pounds flank steak
  • 4 cloves of chopped garlic
  • 3 sliced green onions, and an extra you'll never remember to put as garnish that will eventually be thrown away in frustration when you find it a month later.
  • 1/2 an onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/4 cup cooking sherry
  • 1/2 tablespoon white wine vinegar, or red wine or whatever random 'flavor' of vinegar you have
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon molasses
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, or however many grinds you want until you get bored.
  • 1.5 teaspoons red chili pepper flakes
  • 1/2 tablespoon peanut butter
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch

    1. Add all ingredients except the meat and cornstarch to slow cooker.
    2. Slice meat into thin strips, or little chunks.
    3. Toss meat in bag with cornstarch, coating as best you can.
    4. Put meat in slow cooker, stirring slightly to coat in sauce.
    5. Cover and cook on low for about 5 hours.
    6. Serve over rice with broccoli, or whatever veggies you're after.
    7. If you remember, garnish with extra green onion on top. You will never remember this step.

    Today's lessons learned:
    • Sometimes you don't need or want dessert. This happens rarely.
    • It is okay to walk away from a bad board game.
    • I need to learn to better judge how much food I'm making.
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