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Every home cook knows that one of the easiest things to cook with is ground beef, ground turkey or ground chicken. Recipes using ground meats cook up quick so you don’t have to slave in the kitchen just to prepare a delicious dinner. In fact, I’d say most ground meat recipes can be made in about 30 minutes, easily.
So when I find a recipe using ground meats, I always feel like I hit the jackpot.
In the July/August issue of Experience Life Magazine, I found a recipe for a thai beef stir-fry. I decided to give it a try because I had all of the ingredients already in my home!
This recipe calls for ground beef, green beans, an eggplant and a red bell pepper, along with a jalapeno pepper, coconut aminos and worcestershire sauce.
As you can imagine, when you bring all those ingredients together, you get the perfect blend of savory, sweet, salty, bitter and spicy.
While I love Thai food, I always have trouble replicating Thai dishes at home. I think it might be because I cannot get over the hurdle of using fish sauce, a staple ingredient in most Thai cuisine. Fish sauce is made from fermented fish that is made into a condiment sauce used in Thai cooking. There’s something about me using it that just doesn’t sit well with me (confessions of a picky eater here!).
While you may use fish sauce in your recipes, and I recommend you do if you have it, I simply swap fish sauce for worcestershire sauce. Worcestershire sauce still includes fermented fish along with other ingredients like soy sauce and spices. If you use worcestershire sauce, you MUST make sure it’s gluten-free. Some brands are NOT gluten-free as they include soy sauce (which contains wheat unless specified) or barley malt, also not gluten-free.
Lea Perrins worcestershire sauce is typically gluten-free, but with anything, you MUST read the label to know for sure. (My bottle is labeled GF.)
The original recipe from the magazine also calls for Japanese eggplant, however, Japanese eggplants are hard to find in most American grocery stores. If you don’t live near an Asian mart, just go ahead and use a regular eggplant. The main difference is that Japanese eggplants have a thinner skin and slightly different flavor. If you use a regular eggplant, you’ll still enjoy the flavor and texture of eggplant, no worries!
I could not find Japanese eggplants at my local grocery store, so I just sliced up a regular eggplant instead and it was wonderful. I may add more eggplant to the recipe if I make this again.
Let’s just take a moment to appreciate how colorful, fragrant and savory this dish is. It truly taps into all your senses!
Tip! Serve the thai beef stir-fry atop rice for a more hearty meal, or enjoy as a standalone meal in a bowl.
Thai Beef Stir-Fry Recipe
Thai Beef Stir-Fry
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/2 lb. green beans washed
- 1/2 Japanese eggplant cut into strips, okay to use regular eggplant
- 2 tsp. avocado oil
- 1 large red bell pepper thinly sliced
- 1.5 lbs. organic ground beef
- 1 medium jalepeno seeded, stemmed and sliced thin
- 1 tsp. Kosher salt
- 3 cloves garlic finely chopped
- 1 lime
- 1 Tbsp. fish sauce or substitute worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbsp. coconut aminos or substitute gluten-free soy sauce or tamari
- 4 scallions white and green parts, sliced
- In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil, then add green beans and eggplant to pan. Cover and lower heat to medium-high. Steam vegetables for about four minutes or until tender. Transfer vegetables to a large bowl and set aside.
- Add avocado oil to the same saucepan and warm over medium high heat. Add bell pepper and cook for 2 minutes or until just soft. Transfer peppers to bowl with vegetables.
- Return saucepan to heat and add ground beef, jalapeno and salt. Cook until meat is brown.
- Add garlic, juice of lime, fish sauce and coconut aminos to meat mixture and stir to coat meat. Add the vegetables back to the pan and heat for another minute until everything is warm.
- Turn off heat. Add scallions to the mixture and toss to combine all ingredients. Serve immediately.