If you're old enough, the taste of this dish might transport you back to a time when American-style Cantonese was the most prevalent Chinese food around. The flavors here are simple, and the success of the recipe depends upon the freshness of its ingredients. For a little deep heat, add a small red bird's-eye chili pepper to the oil as it heats up, or sprinkle crushed red pepper flakes into the sauce just before you add the broccoli and and cooked rice noodles.
Serve with eggrolls or a first course of hot-and-sour soup.
- Salt, for the noodles' cooking water
- 8 ounces dried rice stick noodles
- 1 pound broccoli
- 1 pound sirloin steak
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 2 medium cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons water
Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add a generous pinch of salt, then add the noodles. Cook for 6 minutes, stirring occasionally, until they have softened. Drain; keep warm.
Meanwhile, trim off the broccoli florets; discard the thick stems or reserve for another use. Place the florets in a microwave-safe bowl and add just enough water to cover the bottom of the bowl. Cover tightly with plastic wrap; cook on HIGH for 4 minutes or until the florets are crisp-tender. Drain.
Trim all excess fat from the sirloin steak, then cut the meat into thin slices about 2 inches long.
Heat the oil in a large skillet or wok over medium-high heat until the oil shimmers. Add half of the meat and cook for 3 minutes without stirring, then cook for 2 minutes, stirring, until no trace of pink remains. Transfer to a plate; repeat with the remaining meat, leaving the second batch in the skillet.
Peel and finely chop the garlic; add to the skillet or wok and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly, then return the first batch of meat to the skillet.
Whisk together the oyster sauce, soy sauce, cornstarch and water in a liquid measuring cup. Pour into the skillet or wok; cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly, to form a slightly thickened sauce.
Add the broccoli and the noodles, stirring to incorporate and coat them evenly.
Divide among individual wide shallow bowls. Serve immediately.
Adapted from "The First Real Kitchen Cookbook," by Megan and Jill Carle (Chronicle, 2011).
Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.
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