Monday, September 29, 2014

Szechuan Green Beans with Ground Beef

I have a confession. I served this for dinner last night and EVERYONE cried. Well, except
for Graham who showed up mid-way through the meal to find a harried wife and three kids with blood shot eyes who were dining on plates of plain rice and white beans straight out of the can. Yeah, I might have had an "incident" with the red pepper flakes. And by that I mean I may have tripled them unnecessarily in an attempt to extrapolate the sauce recipe. Even I was nearly dying, totally unable to taste anything other than SPICE! It was so spicy that I broke my own golden rule
"What's on the table is what's for dinner" and started grabbing whatever I could scrounge together from the fridge and pantry to feed the kids instead. 

I guess you probably should be saying ONE GIANT THANK YOU to me for testing this dish out one last time before I "took it public" and posted it on the World Wide Web and made all your kids cry. So, you're welcome. Happy to help. I'm sure you're just dying to make this one now that I've given it such positive hype! But rest assured, the recipe has been adjusted and the tears over here have been Kleenexed. 

Truly, this is one of our favorite Asian recipes to prepare at home. The original recipe calls for ground pork but we have a cow in our freezer (literally) and so I usually substitute ground beef though I have also used ground turkey. You can make the sauce ahead of time and the dish whips up really quickly. Not only is this a great weeknight meal at home, it is also a great one for getaways or camping trips. This past summer, I prepared this dish at our annual family campout. I made a large batch, brought the sauce pre-mixed in a Tupperware container and then prepared everything else at camp. Every last bit was devoured! There is a slight chance that I blew a fuse in the mini van trying to cook the rice in the rice cooker that I plugged into the cigarette lighter....but I'm no electrician. And I can neither confirm nor deny that my rice cooker accompanied me camping....

Szechuan Green Beans with Ground Beef
(adapted slightly from Cooking Light Magazine)

1 pound lean ground beef (or pork or turkey)
2 teaspoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons peanut oil, divided
1 ½ lbs green beans, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh garlic, divided
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
4 teaspoons sugar
Up to 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (less if milder spice is desired)
2 Tbsp + 2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
4 cups hot cooked brown rice

Combine the first 4 ingredients (beef through pepper) in a medium bowl. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add green beans and fry with ½ tsp garlic until beans crisp tender. Set aside in bowl.

Heat remaining oil in skillet and add ground beef mixture and remaining garlic; cook for 5-7 minutes or until meat loses its pink color, stirring to crumble. Add green beans and toss to mix.

Combine hoisin and next 3 ingredients (through soy sauce) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Add hoisin mixture to pan. Cook 2 minutes or until thoroughly heated, stirring frequently. Serve over rice.

Yield: 6 servings


  1. Hi. I stumbled onto this blog when i googled ground turkey and green beans. I'm not much for creative searches for what I need. Anyway, after sifting through pages of the same recipes and various search sites I found your quick and easy recipe and it was very tasty! Thanks, I'm not usually a commenter but I felt I had to say a big thank you for this one!

  2. It's best to water well, leave the plant to dry out a bit, and water well once to buy tonka bean Houston TX

  3. can’t wait to try some of these. The crockpot is wonderful for summer to keep from heating the house up.

    Regards: Eve Hunt

  4. Superbly written article, if only all bloggers offered the same content as you, the internet would be a far better place..

  5. I make my soft boiled eggs just like you except I leave my water boiling and do 6-7 minutes. They always turn out perfectly. I think it’s easier than poaching, but I will poach my eggs for eggs benedict.
    Joseph Donahue

  6. Thabks for sharing this tip! It’s going to be my first time to bake spaghetti squash and I’m lucky to have read your post I’m so excited that I won’t fail because your tips are easy and perfect!
    Kelly Hubbard

  7. This is an excellent list! I will be making a lot of these �� I’ve done some already! Homemade always tastes better.
    Jayme Silvestri

  8. Came across this recipe in Pinterest and been in love with your blog ever since.. I tried it today with whatever I could get a hold of and it was super yummy!!! Thank you.
    Paul Brown


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