Marinated slices of beef are stir fried with celery and carrot then tossed with thickened and sweetened soy sauce. Beef and celery stir fry is easy to cook and perfect over rice.
If you feel there is too much meat in proportion to the vegetables in the photo above, you can always halve the meat or double the amount of vegetables. Meat and vegetable stir fries are versatile like that. They can withstand adjustments to suit your personal taste.
For convenience, you can simply buy pre-sliced beef. Yakiniku-cut or sukiyaki-cut will both work well. If you prefer to do the slicing yourself, I suggest semi-freezing the slab of meat to make slicing easier.
What beef cut is ideal? A tender cut. Stewing beef doesn’t do well in stir fries. Eye round, bottom round or top round are my top recommendations. Sirloin and tenderloin may be more tender but they are much too lean.
Start by stir frying the vegetables. You’re not cooking them through at this point but simply giving them texture so that when you pop them into your mouth, there is none of the “boiled” texture that ruins stir fries terribly.
Scoop out the vegetables and move them to a plate. Add more oil to the wok and stir fry the pre-seasoned beef.
Add back the vegetables, pour in the sauce and let the beef and vegetables finish cooking while the sauce thickens.
And there you have it! Delectable beef and celery stir fry cooked in under ten minutes.
Too much sauce? My family likes it that way. They like enough extra sauce to spoon over their rice.
You may serve the beef and celery stir fry in a serving platter and let everyone just take how much or how little they want. Or you can half fill bowls with rice and ladle the beef and celery stir fry over the rice.
Beef and Celery Stir Fry
- 400 grams thinly sliced beef
- 4 tablespoons soy sauce divided
- 2 tablespoons sweet rice wine
- 1 and 1/2 teaspoons sugar divided
- 3 tablespoons tapioca starch or corn starch, divided
- 3 to 4 celery stalks
- 1 carrot
- 1 onion
- 4 cloves garlic
- 2 cups broth
- 2 pinches black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 4 tablespoons cooking oil
- 1/4 teaspoon sesame seed oil
- Cut the sliced beef into strips about half an inch wide. Place in a bowl.
- Mix together 2 tablespoons soy sauce with the rice wine, 1/2 teaspoon sugar, 1 tablespoon starch and a pinch of pepper. Pour over the beef and mix well. Set side.
- Trim the celery stalks. Cut on the bias into slices about half an inch thick.
- Peel the carrot and cut into sticks roughly the same size as the celery.
- Peel and thinly slice the onion.
- Peel and chop the garlic.
- Make the sauce. In a bowl, mix together the broth, remaining soy sauce and sugar.
- Heat the wok and pour in a tablespoon of oil.
- When the oil starts to smoke, dump the celery and carrot and stir fry for about 15 seconds.
- Add the sliced onion, chopped garlic, salt and remaining pepper. Stir fry for another 15 seconds. Scoop out and spread on a plate to cool immediately to prevent letting the vegetables continue cooking in the residual heat.
- Pour the remaining cooking oil into the wok and heat until just starting to smoke.
- Spread the marinated beef on the hot oil. Do not disturb for the first minute. Stir fry using your spatula to break up large clumps of meat. Cook just until the meat is no longer pink.
- Add the cooked vegetables to the meat.
- Stir the sauce well and pour into the wok. Cook, stirring often, until the sauce is thick and clear.
- Taste and adjust the seasonings, if needed.
- Drizzle in the sesame seed oil. Toss. Serve immediately.