The Wok Wednesday dish for this past week is Chinese Jamaican Stir-Fried Beef and Carrots. Alas, we’re running a bit late – though only a week 😉 Sometimes life becomes wonderfully busy.
I also have been on a search for the habanero sauce this dish was created with. Sadly, no success, tho I think I can easily order it. Surprisingly in the overwhelming array of hot sauces available in local grocers, including several Asian stores, I did not find it. I did, however, have a nice habanero sauce at home and adjusted it to closely approximate the heat and sweet level we were looking for. While I still will search for Matouk’s Calypso sauce, I found my Costa Rican made Turtle Bay Habanero (a gift from a wicked godson, I suspect) plus some sweet mustard and a little sweetness from Lilikoi syrup (3:2:1) stood in just fine. Next time I might just add a teaspoon of Aunty Lilikoi’s Habanero Mustard to the hot sauce.
We loved the quickness of this dish – and even the slicing of the meat (the longest prep needed) took only a few minutes. I did plan ahead a little after my closest butcher was not able to provide a small enough quantity of flank steak, and I bought flap steak instead. That was much more marbled, and ‘softer’, so I popped it in the freezer for 20-25 minutes to make slicing easier, like you might with chicken. The upside of this substitution is that it had great flavour.
My cautiousness about habanero meant I actually was seeking all sweet counterbalances, so I also used red onion. I think this dish has just the right amount of heat to leave you with a satisfying “happy mouth” without destroying your enjoyment. I am not a serious pepper-head, so bear with me – this ride was safe but deliciously heated. I also followed Grace Young’s excellent tips on cooking rice on the stovetop rather than delegating this to my rice cooker. With my semi-brown rice, this was the best result I have had, and I also had some leftover for a fried rice dish later in the week.