Thursday, September 22, 2011

Tortilla wrapped ginger beef

Don't you just love food you can assemble? like peking duck, chinese lumpia or tacos. It's the concept of "making" your own version that I think appeals to most people. (or I guess we have an innate desire to play with our food... hahahaha)

There was a time my son was bugging me to buy him a burrito. I don't think he has any idea what a burrito is. I think if he really KNEW what was inside, he would not like eating it. (I have had burritos when I was an exchange student in the US  and it was nothing fantastic... its just wrapped refried beans!). My son probably thought it was like one of those wraps he saw in a KFC commercial.

So, on this thought, I bought some tortillas in the supermarket and searched for a nice recipe to make. It had to be something you wrap and has a lot of flavor (the tortilla is tasteless). Thankfully, I still had some recipes in my iphone food network application that I had saved to make and one of them is this one. The original recipe was done with pita and a side dish of pickled carrots and cucumbers, but I decided to tinker with it to suit my family's taste. (I was sure they would not like to eat the pickled carrots anyway) The original recipe is by Sandi Richard

You'll need:
1/2 kilo (1 pound) sirloin steak (better put a little baking powder in the meat to tenderize it a bit)
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup water
1 egg
peanut oil

2/3 cup shredded carrots
2 tbsp. chopped green onions
1/4 cup shredded fresh ginger
1-2 cloves garlic

STICKY SAUCE (I doubled this recipe... it was sooo good!)-- combine all these together in a bowl
1 tbsp oil
3 tbps soy sauce
2 tbsp wine, red or white
4 tbsp. white vinegar
1 tbsp sesame oil
1/2 cup sugar
1 dash crushed chili flakes

lettuce leaves for the wraps
tortilla wraps

slice the steak into strips across the grain. Place the cornstarch in a large bowl and add water- whisk. Beat the eggs into the cornstarch mixture. Toss in the beef and stir to coat. Pour 1 inch oil into wok. Heat until hot but not smoking. Pan fry the beef in oil a quarter at a time.  Drain on paper towels.

tip: do not overcook beef. if they look like they have changed color, you can take them out already. over cooked beef is very tough.

Heat the oil in the wok. Add the shredded carrots, onion, ginger and garlic. In that order.
stir fry for a few minutes until fragrant.
add the sticky sauce to the vegetables and bring to a boil. reduce the heat to simmer and cook until thick. toss in the beef and mix until well coated. serve with tortilla wrap

heat the tortilla in a pan. set aside in a plate.

put one tortilla in a plate, top with lettuce leaves and pour some of the beef. wrap.

The sticky sauce really does it for this recipe. I think you can also try doing this with chicken and it would be good too. The sugar and vinegar gives it a sweet and sour taste all at the same time. As we, Filipinos are very fond of sweet food.. this would surely be a nice addition to our regular family fare.

I think you can also serve this on top of rice or as canapes. (toast some small bread bites and top with lettuce and the ginger beef.)

P.S. I had leftovers and decided to make this into a salad by tearing some lettuce and adding this as a topping. (quick lunch!)

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