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Neil Perry: Stirfried beef with Sichuan peppercorns and sweet bean sauce

You'll need

80 ml (1/3 cup) peanut oil 350 gm beef fillet, thinly sliced across the grain, cut into thin strips 1 tsp finely chopped ginger 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 2 tsp Shaoxing wine (see note) 2 tsp Sichuan peppercorns 1 celery stalk, cut into julienne 2 green onions, cut into julienne Small handful of coriander leaves   Sweet bean sauce 1½ tbsp sweet bean paste (see note) 1 tbsp Chinkiang vinegar (see note) 1 tbsp caster sugar ¼ tsp chilli oil


  • 01
  • To make sweet bean sauce, mix together the sweet bean paste, Chinkiang vinegar, caster sugar, chilli oil and a pinch of sea salt.
  • 02
  • Heat a wok until just smoking. Add half the oil and, when hot, stirfry the beef in batches until well browned, then remove and wipe the wok clean. Heat the remaining oil in the wok until just smoking and stirfry the ginger and garlic until fragrant. Deglaze the wok with the Shaoxing, return the beef to the wok with the sweet bean sauce and toss well to ensure the beef is evenly coated. Add the peppercorns, celery and green onion and toss to heat through. Spoon onto a plate and sprinkle with coriander to serve.
Note Shaoxing wine, sweet bean paste and Chinkiang vinegar are available from Asian supermarkets.

I really love the numbing effect of the Sichuan peppercorns and the touch of heat the chilli oil gives this stirfry. By all means, dial up the heat by adding more chilli oil.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

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