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Chilli Beef With A Sticky Rice Omelette © Home Comforts by James Martin (Quadrille, £20) Photography: Yuki Sugiura
January 2015
Reading time 5

James Martin has a new recipe for you to try...

Make sure you reduce the sauce for the beef down until sticky, as you want the meat to be coated in the sauce.
  • For the chilli beef
  • Flavourless vegetable oil, to deep-fry, plus 2 tbsp
  • 400g beef fillet, cut into thin strips
  • 1 tbsp Szechuan peppercorns
  • Finely grated zest of 2 limes
  • Finely grated zest of 1 orange
  • 3 heaped tbsp rice flour, potato flour or cornflour
  • For the sauce
  • 150g caster sugar
  • 150ml Shaoxing rice wine
  • 25ml rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 ½ red chillies, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 2 tsp chilli flakes
  • 10cm root ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 lemon grass stalks, outer leaves removed, Finely chopped
  • 4 lime leaves, finely chopped
  • For the sticky rice omelette
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 4 eggs
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 400g cooked sticky rice, cooked and drained, at room temperature
  1. Heat a deep-fat fryer to 190C or heat the oil for deep-frying in a deep heavy-based frying pan until a breadcrumb sizzles and turns brown when dropped into it. (CAUTION: Hot oil can be dangerous. Do not leave unattended.)
  2. Toss the beef strips with the two tablespoons of vegetable oil.
  3. Place the Szechuan peppercorns into a mortar and pestle and crush to a fine powder. Place them in large bowl with the lime and orange zests and rice flour, then toss well to combine. Add the beef and toss to coat each piece.
  4. Drop a small batch of the beef into the fat fryer and cook for two minutes. Don’t overcrowd the pan. Drain on kitchen paper to blot off the excess fat. Keep warm while you cook the rest.
  5. Now make the sauce. Heat a frying pan or wok until hot, add the sugar, rice wine, vinegar and soy sauce and bring to the boil. Add the chillies, chilli flakes, ginger, lemon grass and lime leaves, then cook for five to eight minutes until thickened, sticky and glossy looking.
  6. Add the cooked beef to the sauce, remove from the heat and toss well so that all the beef is coated in sticky chilli sauce.
  7. Now for the omelette. Heat a wok until hot, add the oil and swirl to coat before very carefully wiping the wok out with kitchen towel, removing any excess oil.
  8. Whisk the eggs together with the soy sauce then pour into the hot wok, lifting the wok up and rolling the egg around the sides of it so you have one very large omelette. 
  9. Add the cooked rice to the centre of the omelette then carefully peel the omelette away from the sides of the wok to cover the rice.
  10. When the rice is hot through and the omelette set, roll out on to a board and cut into four.
  11. Pile the beef on to a plate or into bowls and serve the rice omelette on a board alongside.

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