I highly recommend the ribeye as the best piece of cut for this type of dish. it’s not chewy and leathery when cooked – even if it’s medium rare.
Why do they call it shakey beef (Bo Luc Lac)? I believe it comes from the method of cooking the beef. You don’t really stir this as you would to cook it evenly. You pan fry it on each side with a bit of the marinade to keep it juicy with a slight burnt taste to it. I was a seafood vegetarian for about 15+ years of my life and I have to say that this was the only dish that makes me regret doing so. I missed it so much! But now that I’m back on my beef charade, I’m looking forward to perfecting it.
1 1/2 lb of ribeye steak (cut into 1 inch cubes)
1 small onion (cut length wise)
2 1/2 tbsp. of oyster sauce
1 tsp. of sesame oil
1 1/2 tbsp. sugar
1 tbsp. minced garlic
1 tbsp. onion powder
2 tsp. black pepper
1 bundle of watercress
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp. sugar
A pinch of salt
Prepare the marinade by combining the beef, oyster sauce, sesame oil, sugar, garlic, onion powder and black pepper. Stir evenly and put in the fridge for about half an hour.
(Yes, this wasn’t the ideal Ribeye I had mentioned… )
For the vinegarette. in a mixing bowl, mix together the rice wine, sugar and pinch of salt. stir until the sugar has dissolve and this should be a good balance of sweet, sour and salty.
Wash and rinse the watercress. Shake off any excess water to avoid diluting the vinegarette. In a bowl, mix the watercres with the 1-2 tbsp. of vinegarette at a time and mix it well. lay it over a pretty platter.
In a hot pan, put about 2-3 tbsp. of cooking oil into the pan and layer the beef cubes in one by one to let it sear on each side. Avoid “shaking” too early, the juice will not get trap in the beef and it’ll get really watery. If you’re not comfortable shaking, just flip each one over one by one so it’ll cook evenly. I would do this in small batches just so the beef will have room and time to sear.
Transfer the beef onto the bed of watercress. Bring the pan back to the stove, put a bit more cooking oil into the pan. While hot, put in the onions and let it sauteed until the it is brown and caramelized.
Topped the beef with the carmelized onions. The original way to eat this is with some lime, salt and pepper. I’m not used to eating it that way. I usually make this tasty enough that you don’t need to dip it. But I do like to have a side of sweet chili fish sauce for my watercress.