For the beef:
10 ounces flank steak, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon water
Pinch of baking soda (optional, but good for tougher cuts of meat)
1 teaspoon dark soy sauce (mushroom flavored preferred)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon oil
For the rest of the dish:
1 tablespoon hot water
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1 1/2 tablespoons regular or light soy sauce
2 teaspoons dark soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon MSG (totally optional!)
Fresh ground white pepper
5 cups cooked rice
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
2 eggs, beaten
1 medium onion, diced
3/4 cup peas
1 scallion, chopped
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
First, combine the beef, salt, water, baking soda, dark soy sauce, cornstarch, and oil in a bowl and stir until well-incorporated. Set aside. (We added a bit of water to marinate the beef, which generally is a no-no for beef…but for this fried rice dish, it keeps the small morsels of beef juicy and tender!)
Next, combine the hot water, sugar, sesame oil, soy sauces, MSG (if using), and white pepper in a small bowl. This is the sauce that you’ll be adding to the rice, and it’s much easier to have it combined and ready to go before you start cooking.
Take your cooked rice and fluff it with a fork or with your hands (you can rinse your hands in cold water if the rice starts sticking to them). If you are using cold leftover rice, try to break up the clumps as best as possible.
Heat your wok over medium high heat, add 1 tablespoon of oil and the eggs, and scramble them until just cooked. You can start scooping them up when they look like they are almost done. Transfer them back into the same bowl you mixed them in and set aside. They will continue to cook in the bowl and you will cook them again in the rice.
Heat the wok until just smoking and spread 1 tablespoon oil around your wok. Add the marinated beef in one layer, and let sear for 20 seconds. Next, stir fry the beef until about 70% done. Transfer the beef back to the marinade bowl, and set aside.
With the wok over medium high heat, add the last tablespoon of oil, and sauté the onions until translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the rice, using a metal spatula to flatten out and break up any large clumps. If the rice is cold from the refrigerator, continue stir-frying until the rice is warmed up, about 5 minutes. Also, sprinkling a little water on large clumps of rice will help break them up more easily.
Once the rice is warmed through, add the sauce mixture. Stir the rice with a scooping motion until the grains are evenly coated with sauce. The rice should be completely hot by now. Next, add the beef and any juices from the bowl you set aside earlier, and stir fry for another minute.
Add the eggs, breaking up any large clumps, peas, and the scallions. Continue stir-frying for another 30 seconds. Push the rice into the middle of the wok to let the perimeter of the wok heat up. After about 20 seconds, pour 1 tablespoon of Shaoxing wine around the perimeter of the wok. Stir-fry for another 20 seconds. Adding the wine using this method gives the dish a little extra wok hei! At this point, taste the rice to see if it needs a little more salt, soy sauce, or white pepper and season accordingly.
Serve immediately, and, if you’re like us, don’t forget some homemade chili oil!