Although classes have started for this new school year, I decided to stay home instead of moving back to Isla Vista. However, I began to miss the food there, especially Sizzling Lunch’s Beef Pepper Rice. So I went online, found this recipe and impulsively bought a cast-iron skillet. After spending several weeks seasoning my skillet, I was finally able to try out this recipe.
Ingredients (serves one):
Amakuchi (Honey-Soy Sauce)
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
- ½ tablespoon water
Karakuchi (Garlic-Soy Sauce)
- ¼ teaspoon canola oil
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
- 2 tablespoon soy sauce
- Pinch of ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon water
- ¼ teaspoon cornstarch
Beef and Rice Platter
- 2 tablespoon canola oil
- ¼ large onion, chopped finely
- 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
- 1 cup cooked white rice
- Hot-pot beef slices (see note for alternatives)
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- ¼ cup corn (fresh, canned or frozen)
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1 stalk green onion, thinly sliced (optional)
- To make Amakuchi sauce: In a small pan, add the honey, soy sauce, oyster sauce and water. Mix over low heat for 5 minutes. Set aside.
- To make Karakuchi sauce: In a small pan, sauté the garlic with the canola oil until fragrant. Add soy sauce and black pepper. In a separate bowl, mix the water and cornstarch to make a slurry. Slowly pour the slurry into the pan and cook until the sauce boils and thickens. Set aside.
- To make beef and rice platter: Heat up an iron skillet or heavy-duty pan over high heat. Sauté onion and garlic with the oil until aromatic. Add the rice to the center of the pan and lay out the beef around the rice. Sprinkle the pepper onto the beef. Add the corn on top of the rice. Top it off with the butter and green onion.
- At this point, if you are using a cast-iron skillet, you can take the pan off the heat. If you are using other pans that do not retain heat, you should make sure the beef is thoroughly cooked before taking it off.
- When everything is cooked, serve with the Amakuchi and Karakuchi sauces.
- To my knowledge, hot-pot beef slices are usually found in Asian supermarkets. If there are none in your area, you can use sirloin by freezing it and then cutting it into extremely thin slices. Make sure that the meat is fully thawed and dried before cooking. In my opinion, this dish would taste better with thin meat slices, but if you are using slightly thicker slices, make sure to cook it thoroughly before consuming it!
- The corn can be either canned or frozen. I used canned corn and heated it up in a small pan before adding it on top of the rice. This would especially be a good idea if you plan on using frozen corn. I also heated the onion along with the corn to soften the onion before sautéing it with the garlic.
- If you do not have a cast-iron skillet, don’t fret! You can use any other heavy-duty pans, but since they will not be able to retain heat as well as cast-iron skillets, make sure that the meat is fully cooked before consuming.
- This recipe is very flexible and the meat can be substituted with other types of meat, fish, vegetables and even fried tofu.
Since there is no salt in this recipe, I thought this dish was going to be bland. However, the sauces were extremely flavorful and perfectly seasoned this dish. The honey-soy sauce (Amakuchi) added a hint of sweetness, which was contrasted with the soy sauce in both sauces. The sauces were a perfect combination and complemented each other well. All in all, this recipe is restaurant quality and will make you feel like you’re back in IV dining in at Sizzling Lunch!