Posts Tagged ‘rice’

Crockpot Chinese Pepper Steak

Tuesday, January 27th, 2009

This one is a classic family recipe of ours. I grew up eating this pepper steak, before I even really knew that I liked Chinese food. This is also the recipe that taught David that he likes Chinese food. Now he happily eats at P.F. Chang’s, Opera, and of course, my Cashew Chicken Stir-Fry and Chicken & Broccoli Fried Rice. I’ve also got him hooked on these potstickers from Costco, but that’s another story.

This doesn’t have to be made in a crockpot, of course, but I’ve always had good luck making it that way. Taking advantage of the crockpot lets you use less tender cuts of beef. I make this dish as outlined below, but for those who like them, onions or mushrooms would be a welcome addition. You probably aren’t surprised to learn that we serve this dish with Alton Brown’s Baked Brown Rice, but white instant rice would be just fine, if that’s what you prefer. David skips the chow mein noodles, but as far as I’m concerned, they’re a necessity!

Crock-Pot Chinese Pepper Steak

  • 2 cans beef gravy
  • 1 pound of stew beef or roundsteak, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 3 large green peppers, seeded & chopped
  • 1 can water chestnuts, drained
  • 2 cups rice, cooked
  • 2 TBSP hoisin sauce
  • 1 TBSP soy sauce
  • 1 TBSP extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup tomato juice or vegetable juice (like V8)
  • 1 Cup chow mein noodles

1. Add Hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and EVOO to a skillet, over medium high heat. Add beef and green peppers and saute for 3-4 minutes, or until beef begins to caramelize.

2. Add gravy, water chestnuts, tomato juice, and contents of skillet to a crockpot; stir together. Cover and heat on low approximately 6 hours.

3. Serve over rice, garnished with chow mein noodles. If the sauce is too thin, it can be thickend wtih slurry of 2 tablespoons of cornstarch mixed into 2 tablepoons of cold water.

Broccoli and Chicken Stir-Fried Rice

Saturday, January 10th, 2009

Tonight, for dinner, I made Chicken Fried Rice with Broccoli. Now if you know me, I know you’re probably thinking:

“Broccoli! Again?”

What can I say? I’m trying to like it. And I’m getting pretty good it. This dish, another from Cooking Light, was easy to make, tasty, and healthy on top of it. As usual, I made some changes to the original, but I was happy with how it turned out. We had potstickers along with the fried rice, for a whole take-out at home scene–but much healthier.

One of the nicest things about this recipe is that it’s designed to use up leftover chicken. Gotta love those shortcuts!

Broccoli & Chicken Stir-Fried Rice
Adapted from Cooking Light Magazine; Makes 4 Servings


  • 1 1/2  tablespoons  sesame oil
  • 4  cups  broccoli florets (about 1 bunch)
  • 1 cup matchstick cut carrots
  • 3-4 green onions, sliced
  • 1/2  cup  fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth, divided
  • 2  cups  cooked brown rice
  • 1  tablespoon  minced garlic
  • 2  teaspoons  minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1/2  teaspoon  crushed red pepper
  • 2  cooked chicken breast halves, thinly sliced
  • 2  tablespoons  low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2  tablespoons  hoisin sauce
  • 1  tablespoon  rice wine vinegar
  • 1  teaspoon  cornstarch
  • 1/4  teaspoon  salt


Heat sesame oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add broccoli, carrots, and onions; sauté for 5 minutes. Add 1/4 cup broth; cover and cook for 3 minutes. Remove broccoli mixture from pan.

Place pan over medium-high heat. Add cooked rice; cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add broccoli mixture, garlic, ginger, pepper, and chicken; toss well.

Combine remaining 1/4 cup broth, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, vinegar, and cornstarch; add to pan. Bring to a boil; cook 1 minute. Stir in salt.

Note: This was very good, I’m sure we’ll make this again. It basically turned out to be a cross between Chicken & Broccoli in Garlic Sauce and Chicken Fried Rice. As usual, I used Alton Brown’s Baked Brown Rice for the rice in this dish. As I said above, this recipe is great for using up leftover chicken, but I didn’t have any of that, so I used a storebought asian marinade on boneless skinless chicken breasts.

Chicken and Vegetable Stir Fry with Cashew Rice

Wednesday, January 7th, 2009

If you (like just about everyone I work with) are working on your New Year’s Resolution to eat healthier, you probably have not been aided much by this blog. There have been some seriously unhealthy things around here lately, but I swear, that’s not all we eat! To prove it, here’s a recipe for last night’s dinner, a stir fry dish adapted from Cooking Light magazine.

If you’re looking for healthy recipes and enjoy cooking, you really can’t go wrong with Cooking Light. I get their “Dinner Tonight” emails daily, which is actually where the inspiration for this meal came from.


Chicken & Vegetable Stir Fry with Cashew Rice
Adapted from Cooking Light magazine

  • 1 batch Alton Brown’s Baked Brown Rice, recipe follows
  • 1/3  cup  chopped green onions
  • 1/4  cup  dry-roasted cashews, salted and coarsely chopped
  • 1/2  teaspoon  salt
  • 2/3  cup chicken stock
  • 2  tablespoons  cornstarch, divided
  • 3  tablespoons  soy sauce, divided
  • 2  tablespoons  honey
  • 1 pound boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1  tablespoon  canola oil, divided
  • 1  tablespoon  grated peeled fresh ginger
  • 2  garlic cloves, minced
  • 2  cups  sugar snap peas, trimmed (about 6 ounces)
  • 1  cup  chopped red bell pepper (about 1)
  • 1 can sliced water chestnuts


  1. Cook the rice according to the recipe below. Stir in 1/3 cup chopped green onions, and chopped dry-roasted cashews; set aside, and keep warm.
  2. Whisk together 2/3 cup chicken broth, 1 tablespoon cornstarch, 2 tablespoons soy sauce, and honey in a small bowl, and set aside.
  3. Combine chicken, remaining 1 tablespoon cornstarch, and the remaining 1 tablespoon soy sauce in a bowl, tossing well to coat. Heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken; sauté 4-6 minutes or until browned. Remove from pan.
  4. Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil to pan. Add water chestnuts, ginger, and garlic; sauté 1 minute. Add peas and bell pepper to pan; sauté 1 minute. Stir in pork; sauté 1 minute. Add reserved broth mixture to pan. Bring to a boil; cook 1 minute or until thick, stirring constantly. Serve over cashew rice.

Nutritional Information (For 1 & 1/2 cups of chicken mixture, and 1/2 cup cashew rice): Calories: 460 (23% from fat), Fat: 11.8g (sat 2.5g,mono 6.2g,poly 2.3g), Protein: 31.8g, Carbohydrate: 55.9g, Fiber: 3.6g, Cholesterol: 74mg, Iron:4.6mg, Sodium:787mg, Calcium:73mg

Note: This recipe is flexible; almost a method, rather than a recipe. The original called for pork, onions, and mushrooms, but I made the swaps as you see above–and it was just as good. Broccoli would also be at home here, or maybe those baby corns, bamboo shoots, some carrots, cabbage, or bok choy. It could be spiced up with red pepper flakes, if that’s more to your liking. I’d add about 1/4th of a teaspoon to the remainder of the sauce, if you want a spicier dish.

Alton Brown’s Baked Brown Rice

This is by far the easiest and best brown rice recipe I’ve come across. It’s literally fool-proof, and after you taste the chewy, nutty texture, you’ll never go back to Minute Rice again.

  • 1 1/2 cups brown rice, medium or short grain
  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt


  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  • Place the rice into an 8-inch square glass baking dish.
  • Bring the water, butter, and salt just to a boil in a kettle or covered saucepan. Once the water boils, pour it over the rice, stir to combine, and cover the dish tightly with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Bake on the middle rack of the oven for 1 hour.
  • After 1 hour, remove cover and fluff the rice with a fork. Serve immediately.