Beef in Black Bean Sauce with Stir-Fried Noodles

Tender beef strips, mushrooms, green peppers and onions in a ginger, garlic and black bean sauce served with stir-fried egg noodles.

10 mins prep + 8 mins cook = 18 mins total :: 2 servings @ 413 cals per serving :: one-off wonder :: lazy leftovers

Ingredients:
* 350g organic frying steak
* 1 green pepper
* 1 red onion
* 2 large flat mushrooms
* 100ml of black bean sauce (1 sachet)
* 1 garlic clove
* 1 inch of fresh ginger
* 1 red chilli
* 200g medium egg noodles
* 1 tbsp sunflower oil

Directions:

1. Slice the beef into strips by using a very sharp knife and cutting along the grain of the meat (you could buy pre-cut beef to save even more time).

2. Prepare the vegetables by wiping the mushrooms with a damp cloth and cutting them into 1cm slices; chopping the green pepper into 1 inch pieces and the red onion in to wedges.

3. Peel the ginger and cut into very thin strips; peel and crush the garlic and slice the chilli very thinly (discarding the seeds if you prefer a milder result).

4. Heat the oil in a large pan or wok on a very high heat and boil a kettle of water.

5. When the oil is really hot, after a minute or so, add half the garlic and ginger and stir-fry for a minute to release the flavour before adding the beef and stir-frying for 3-4 minutes, taking care that it doesn’t stick to the pan or burn.

6. Whilst you’re frying the beef, add a saucepan to another hob ring, adding the boiling water to the saucepan and turning up the heat to high to bring back to the boil instantly, then add the noodles and cook to pack instructions (around 4 minutes).

7. When there’s 3 minutes left before the noodles are ready, add the mushrooms, green pepper, onion, chilli and remaining garlic and ginger to the beef and stir-fry for 2 minutes to soften slightly, before adding the black bean sauce and stir-frying for the final minute.

8. Drain the noodles thoroughly, cut into shorter pieces using a sharp knife or scissors and add to the beef, stirfrying for another minute to absorb the flavours and serve.

Foodwitch Factoid:
Serve with jasmine rice instead of noodles, adding on an extra 6 minutes to the cooking time and simply serving as an accompaniment rather than adding to the beef at the final stage. You can also cook an extra portion to enjoy the next day for lunch or use a saved plastic takeaway container to store in the freezer to create your own healthy ready meal for when you haven’t got time (or the inclination) to cook.

Beef Bourguignon with Creamy Mash and Green Beans

Tender beef and button mushrooms nestled in a rich red wine sauce with a heap of creamy mash and green beans.
Profile:

30 mins prep :: 90 mins cook :: 120 mins total :: 4 servings :: 625 cals per serving :: lazy leftovers :: easy doubler

Ingredients:
* 500g Braising steak
* 750ml Red Wine
* 250g Button mushrooms
* 2 white onions
* 4 garlic cloves
* 1 tsp dried bay leaves
* 1 tbsp sunflower oil
* 4 white potatoes
* 50 ml semi-skimmed milk
* 30g butter
* 400g green beans
* Pinch sea salt
* Twist of black pepper

Directions:
1. Heat the oven to 180 degrees, slice the onions, cut the braising steak into chunks, wipe the mushrooms and crush the garlic.
2. Heat the oil on a medium temperature in a large casserole dish (with a lid), then add the onions, cook them gently for 3 minutes until transluscent, then add the garlic and the beef.
3. When the beef has sealed on all sides (after about 3 minutes), add the mushrooms and cook for a further 2 minutes until starting to absorb the juices.
4. Add the red wine (yes that’s quite a lot) and the bay leaves, then turn up the heat to bring to a boil, then put the lid on and pop the dish in the oven to cook for 1.5hrs (just enough time to pop to the local for a swift half – if you think you might need longer you can always turn the heat down to extend the cooking time!).
5. 20 minutes before you’re ready to serve, boil a kettle of water and add to a large saucepan on a high heat. Scrub the potatoes and cube into small pieces, then add to the boiling saucepan of water. Bring back to the boil, cook for 15 minutes, adding a pinch of sea salt and drain (reserving some of the liquid). Tip the potatoes back into the saucepan and mash, adding a dash of the reserved liquid, the milk, butter and pepper. Adjust according to taste.
6. Meanwhile (about 10 minutes before you’re ready to serve) boil another kettle of water and add to a small saucepan on a high heat. Trim the green beans and add to the boiling saucepan of water. Bring back to the boil, cook for 5 minutes, adding a pinch of sea salt and drain.
7. Serve a portion of beef bourguignon, creamy mash and green beans on to every plate and enjoy.

Alternative Options:
Make double this recipe to have it again another way another day. For the 2nd serving, try it with jacket potato and brocolli instead of mash and beans. Save 25 calories per portion if you have no butter on your spud. Just pop the dish back in the oven with the jacket potato for 15-20 mins to heat through.

Alternatively, make twice the amount of mash, cover and refrigerate (this will keep for a couple of days) and simply reheat the next time on full power in the microwave for 5 minutes, stirring half way through.

If beef is not your thing try using chicken quarters instead or other cuts of chicken on the bone. You can also vegetarianise this recipe by replacing the meat with 2 thickly sliced flat mushrooms and 4 shallots per person.

Foodwitch Factoid:
This recipe sounds really fattening, but because you make it youself you can get away with it, plus by leaving the potato skins on you leave in the best nutrient packed parts and save time (and washing up for that matter).