how to make szechuan lamb stir fry | Family Cuisine

Lamb is a popular meat in Chinese cooking. It's typically cooked in a sauce made from soy sauce, rice wine, and chili bean paste. If you want to make an authentic szechuan dish, try this recipe for stir-

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How to make szechuan lamb stir fry

If you’re looking for the real-deal cumin lamb just like you’ve had in China, you’ve come to the right place! {Gluten free adaptable}

The real-deal Chinese cumin lamb stir fry recipe that yields highly addictive results.

Reading: how to make szechuan lamb stir fry

Cumin lamb, originally from Xinjiang cuisine, is such a popular dish that I thought was a Beijing dish growing up. It is just one of those dishes you see everywhere, no matter whether in a small diner or high school cafeteria.

When visiting China for the first time, especially the northern or western part of the country, you might be surprised at how popular lamb is. As a matter of fact, it is a staple for the Chinese Muslim community, which consists of about 20 million people. My family serves lamb quite a lot because my grandma used to make a mean lamb stew. Now, living in the US, where lamb dishes are not very common, I cook this dish at home to satisfy my craving.

The real-deal Chinese cumin lamb stir fry recipe that yields highly addictive results.

Cumin lamb, when done properly, is very addictive. The lamb cubes are crispy on the surface and buttery tender inside. They are coated in a bold spice mix that includes cumin powder, chili pepper, and Sichuan peppercorns. Tossed in a fragrant oil with plenty of aromatics such as ginger, garlic, and onion, the lamb comes out like a flavor bomb that explodes in your mouth.

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If your knowledge of Chinese food is based on Americanized-Chinese-style dishes from takeout restaurants in the US, you might be shocked to find out this dish does not contain a stir fry sauce. That’s right! It is a different type of stir fry that uses dry spices instead of a sauce to season the food. Sometimes Chinese cookbooks call it a dry stir fry. It is actually the cooking method that’s most popular in the northern part of China, where I grew up.

The real-deal Chinese cumin lamb stir fry recipe that yields highly addictive results.

Achieving the perfect cumin lamb stir fry

Here are some short but very important notes to help you cook the real-deal cumin lamb with perfectly cooked meat and a bold flavor.

1. Cut the meat to proper size

Although cutting the lamb into thin slices is the most popular way in Chinese restaurants, I stick to cubes when it comes to home cooking. Since the stoves in most home kitchens are not as powerful as those in restaurants, cutting the meat this way will avoid overcooking and generate tender meat.

2. Marinate the meat

This might be the most important step. Not only will the liquid ingredients eliminate any gamey flavor from the lamb, they also tenderize the meat over time. If you have extra time, I highly recommend marinating the meat for an hour or even longer, which will yield ultra-tender lamb.

3. Sear the meat properly

My favorite piece of cookware is a heavy duty carbon steel 12.6-inch frying pan from DeBuyer. Since I have an electric stove at home, I use this pan instead of a wok to make stir fry. It heats up very hot, holds heat well, and is nonstick when properly seasoned. Instead of stirring the meat constantly, I sear each side until just golden while the inside is slightly pink, then set it aside. This way, the meat will be cooked perfectly at the end.

4. Use a generous amount of oil

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It might look like a lot of oil, but remember, we’re cooking a dry stir fry and need plenty of oil to toast the spices and bind the ingredients together. Without enough oil, the spices will burn easily and stick to the skillet.

5. Add the spice mix at the right time

Don’t add the spices too early, which will burn them. And not too late, because we want to toast the spices with the hot oil so they are extra fragrant. We add them at the end of the cooking, and leave them in the pan for about 1 minute.

6. Use plenty of aromatics

Fresh garlic, ginger, and onion are the key components and make the lamb extra fragrant. Also, don’t be surprised by the huge bowl of dried chili peppers. Their purpose is to add aroma to the oil, but not spiciness. Make sure you use mild Chinese or Korean chili peppers, so the dish won’t be too spicy. If you prefer a less spicy dish, add 2 to 3 dried chili peppers instead of the amount listed.

That’s it! Now you have the secret weapon to recreating the real-deal cumin lamb in your own kitchen. I hope you enjoy the dish as much as I do!

The real-deal Chinese cumin lamb stir fry recipe that yields highly addictive results.

More Xinjiang recipes

  • Xinjiang Lamb Skewers (新疆烤串, chuar)
  • Ding Ding Chao Mian (丁丁炒面, Fried Noodles in Lamb Tomato Sauce)
  • Uyghur Lamb Pilaf (Polo, 羊肉抓饭)
  • Baked Samosa, Two Ways (Uyghur Lamb Meat Pie, 烤包子)

If you give this recipe a try, let us know! Leave a comment, rate it (once you’ve tried it), and take a picture and tag it @omnivorescookbook on Instagram! I’d love to see what you come up with.

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