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updated: 1/27/2012 9:41 AM

Dragon Beef

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1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 teaspoon sugar

1 pounds round steak

2 cups oil

⅛-inch slice of ginger, cut into thin strips

5 dried whole red chili peppers

Pinch cumin seeds

Pinch star anise powder or 1 star anise

teaspoon red chili powder

2 teaspoons sesame seeds

1 cup shredded romaine lettuce

Mix together soy sauce, vinegar, sugar in a small container until well combined, then set aside.

Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a pot, add steak and let cook for 3 minutes or until outside turns from pink to white. Drain and rinse in cold water. Pat dry and cut beef into inch thick slices and then into inch wide strips.

On a platter, place a layer of shredded romaine lettuce.

Heat 2 cups oil in a wok or pan on medium high heat. When oil is hot, drop half of beef strips in hot oil and deep fry until outside turns dark brown. Take fried beef out with a skimmer or slotted spoon. Set aside. Repeat with the rest of the beef.

Reserve 1 tablespoon oil in wok or pan, add dried whole chili, ginger, cumin seeds and star anise, stir for a couple of seconds or until aromatic.

Add fried beef, stir-fry for 1 minute. Briefly re-stir soy sauce mixture, pour over beef and continue stir-frying for another minute. Sprinkle red chili powder and sesame seeds over beef while stirring.

Place beef on top of shredded lettuce on the platter. Enjoy this delicious and spicy beef dish on Chinese New Year!

Serves four.

Ying Stoller, Ying's Kitchen, Gurnee

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