When I literally have no time to make anything, I often make hamburgers. Just season the ground meat, form it into patties, cook it on the grill, stick it in between two buns, add some cheese and condiments and voila! Dinner is served! A perfect easy meal.
But sometimes the perfect meal doesn’t fit into life’s social schedule. This weekend I was in a total dinner dilemma as we went to a barbecue the day before and were invited for another one the day after. Not only was I sandwiched in between two hamburger events, but also had chicken burgers at a birthday party earlier in the day.
Then evening rolled around, the kids were starving, and I had to do something with the ground beef that was staring at me from the refrigerator. I needed a non-burger solution. I found this Thai inspired beef dish online and it really hit the spot. I would not say this is an authentic Thai recipe, but it is easy, fast, delicious and does not resemble a hamburger…a perfect easy meal!
Thai Stir Fried Beef and Vegetables with Coconut Rice
1 1/4 cups jasmine rice or basmati rice
1 can (14.1 ounces/ 400ml) coconut milk
2 tablespoons fish sauce (can use less, to taste)
2 tablespoons soy sauce (can use less, to taste)
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 garlic cloves, chopped
3 cups broccoli, chopped in small florets
1 red bell pepper, deseeded and chopped
1 thai red chili or 1 jalepeno pepper, deseeded and chopped (Optional – Can omit chili if don’t want to be spicy, or just use less chili, or add a few red pepper flakes instead).
1 pound or 500g ground beef sirloin
1 cup loosely packed torn fresh basil leaves or 1 tablespoon chopped frozen basil leaves
Lime wedges, for serving
1. In a medium saucepan, combine rice, coconut milk, 3/4 cup water, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cover and bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook until rice is tender and liquid has been absorbed, about 25 minutes.
2. While rice is cooking, combine fish sauce, soy sauce, and sugar in a small bowl. Set soy mixture aside.
3. Heat a cast-iron skillet or wok over high. Add oil, and garlic and chilis (if using). Cook, stirring constantly until garlic softened (about a minute). Add veggies and cook for a few minutes. Remove vegetables and set aside.
4. In same pan, add beef and cook until completely browned. Add soy mixture and cook 30 seconds. Add basil and veggies and cook for a couple minutes, stirring to combine. Check for seasoning. Serve beef over coconut rice with lime wedges. Tastes yummy with some fresh lime squeezed on top. (I didn’t have limes on hand so used lemon and that works too).
PANTRY DIVA TIP: You can use ground chicken, turkey, or pork in this recipe. Also feel free to add other spices or seasonings…ginger, onion, etc.
You can add any vegetables you have on hand. Good way to clean out the veggie drawer in the fridge! Also, I have noticed that if I am making this for kids, the smaller I chop the veggies the better.
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart’s Thai Beef with Chilis and Basil over Coconut Rice. See original recipe here.