Today we are making a spicy snack from Sichuan. We call it Leng Chi Niu Rou(冷吃牛肉). It is crispy beef fried in spicy, flavorful chili oil. These little treats are so delicious that every time I think about it, my mouth is watering. I like to snack it when I am watching movies, with some cold drink. It just such relaxing thing to do.
Szechuan Hot And Spicy Crispy Beef [麻辣冷吃牛肉]
Ingredients For Cooking The Beef In The Water
- 1.5 pounds of beef brisket, round, chuck will work well for this recipe
- 2 tbsp of Chinese cooking wine
- Few slices of ginger
- 2 pieces of scallion
- Enough water to cook the beef
Ingredients For The Spice Mix
- 3 to 20 pieces of red dry chilies depending on your preference
- 2 pieces of bay leaves
- 1 star anise
- a small stick of cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp of fennel seeds
- 1/2 tsp of white peppercorn
- 1 tbsp of Sichuan peppercorn
- 1/2 of black cardamom
- 1 tsp of cumin seed grind half and leave the other half whole
- 2 tbsp of sesame seeds
- 1 +1/2 tsp of salt
- 1.5 tsp of sugar
Ingredients To Season The Oil
- 1 cup of oil to deep fry the beef
- a bunch of scallions
- 6 slices of ginger
- 1/2 of a small-sized onion
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 1/4 cup of water as needed
- Cut the beef into few big pieces. Make sure you cut with a small angle from the fiber direction. brisket.
- Prepare a pot with 1 liter of water. Add the beef in along with 2 tbsp of Chinese cooking wine, few slices of ginger, 2 pieces of spring onion. Cover it and bring it to a boil. Use a sieve to skim all the blood crumbs. Turn the heat to low. Let it cook for 15 minutes.
- While that is cooking, let’s make a spice mix. In a blender, add the following spices: a bunch of hot dried chilies, 2 pieces of bay leaves, 1 star anise, a small stick of cinnamon, 1/4 tsp of fennel seeds, 1/2 tsp of white peppercorn, 1 tbsp of Sichuan peppercorn, 1/2 of a black cardamon, 1 tsp of cumin seeds (1 am only put in half of it, reserve the other half for later). Blend everything into a powder. Put it in a bowl, continue adding 2 tbsp of sesame seeds for some nutty taste, the other half of the cumin seed, 1.5 tsp of salt, 1.5 tsp of sugar. Mix it well and set aside.
- 15 minutes later, the beef should be cooked through but a bit tough, which means you will need some force to stick the chopstick in. Take it out. Rains it under running water to cool it down. Slice it into 1/8 of an inch thick pieces. Then cut it strips. Let it sit in a sieve. Just to get rid of any excess water.
- In a large wok, add in 1 cup of oil. I am using soybean oil. You can use any high smoke point oil such as canola or peanut oil. While it is still cold, add a bunch of green onion, 6 slices of ginger, a handful of onion slices, 5 cloves of garlic that I crushed it. Keep the flame on medium-low. They will season the oil as it gets hot. This is an important step to make your crispy chili beef taste so much better. Fry them for about 5-6 minutes. Some of the aromatics should be slightly crusty and golden. Take them out and discard it. Make sure there is nothing left in the oil or else it will affect the flavor.
- Heat the oil to 370 Add in the well-drained beef. Keep flipping them so each piece cooks evenly. We will fry them for 5-6 minute in total. The beef should be brown on the outside, kind of like beef jerky. Now you can turn off the heat. Take out the beef. Pour out most of the oil. You can reuse it, don’t need to waste that.
- I left about 1/4 of a cup of oil in the wok. Put the beef back in along with the spice mix. I will suggest you add it in batches so you can adjust the spicy level. I also pour in 1/4 cup of water. Because the salt and sugar, they don’t attach to oil. It is hard to get the sodium infused into the meat without the water. Stir everything together. Keep stirring and cooking it for another 3 minutes until all the water is gone. You can taste it to decide if you want the rest of the spice mixture in. Which I do. Give it a final stir, you can take it out. By the way, because I add the salt directly into the spice mixture, so if you use half of the spice mix, you will need to adjust the saltiness a little bit.
- Now comes to the hardest part of this recipe. You have to let it sit in the fridge for 3 hours until it cools down. This dish taste better when it is cold. Sprinkle some spring onion on it before serving.