Friday, February 4, 2011

Beef Teriyaki over Bulgur

I just happened to have a hunk 'o beef waiting for me to do something with it, and the Kitchen Play contest this month is all about beef. Well, Canadian Beef, actually. But considering that this piece of meat came out of my freezer, I can't really say what country it come from. But most of the beef at the grocery store lists the country of origin as "USA, Canada, or Mexico," so there's a chance it was Canadian beef.

But what to make? Weather here has been sort of nasty, so it was a little bit about what I had on hand that would fit the contest. When I saw the Thai-Inspired Beef and Vegetable Soup, I thought it looked interesting. I had soup already made, so I didn't want more soup. But then I realized that the ginger and garlic that flavored the soup were also in my home made teriyaki sauce. And I had that in stock.

Oh, and by the way, the hunk 'o beef in question was a strip steak.

I didn't have any rice noodles, though, and the beef teriyaki needed a neutral companion. I had bulgur wheat already cooked and waiting for me. Even better. With the bulgur already cooked and the teriyaki waiting, this was a pretty quick meal to put together.

Now, the nice thing about this sort of meal is that you can use a tender cut of meat and have it finished quickly, or use a tough meat and stew it until becomes tender. And this is also great for leftovers that are already cooked. This works just as well with beef, pork, chicken ... even some seafood.

The other nice thing is that when you slice a steak and mix it with vegetables and serve it over a starch like bulgur, that meat stretches to serve more people. One steak is plenty for two - or even more, depending on the vegetables you add. Like I mentioned, the cupboards were a little bare, so I used onions and broccoli. But other vegetables would be great in this - carrots, green peppers, peas. Mushrooms are particularly nice, if you've got them. Or bamboo shoots or bean sprouts.

And obviously, it's customizable. Endlessly. You could even serve it over rice noodles, if that's what you wanted to do. Just like that soup that inspired this meal.

Beef Teriyaki over Bulghur

Olive oil (or other oil for cooking, your choice)
1 strip steak
1/2 medium onion, sliced
1 cup small broccoli florets, blanched
1/4 cup teriyaki sauce
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon cornstarch
3 cups cooked bulgur, kept warm

Heat oil in a cast iron pan and sear steak on both sides. Remove steak, add onions, and cook until softened.

Slice steak into thin strips. Mix teriyaki, water, and corn starch. Add steak and broccoli to pan, stir to combine. Add teriyaki mixture. Raise heat, and cook, stirring, until liquid thickens and steak and broccoli are warmed through. Serve over bulgur.