This is a very common dish is Sichuan restaurants worldwide. It is a rather representative of Chinese Sichuan cuisine. The name is called Gan Bian Si Ji Dou.
Ganbian (干煸） is a Sichuan cuisine cooking method of deep frying the vegetable (usually beans or vegetables such as eggplant) until cooked and proceed to the second step of cooking for the incorporation of flavour with the various spices. Usually the deep frying time is very short of less than 5 minutes . Some English website translated this term as “dry fried” ..
When I was young, my mum called Si Ji dou (四季豆）(literally translated as “Four seasons beans”) colloquially as “turtle/tortoise beans” .. My colleagues and some cooking shows or recipes book called it French beans. When I searched French beans in Wiki, there is no such type of beans. When I asked goggled to translate Si Ji Dou , it comes out to be Green beans.. and further searching of Green beans come out all sort of beans..All the kidney beans, string beans, snap beans appeared. It make me very confused as therefore I have decided to use back the name “French beans” for the time being until I am conclusive about the name. Well it is the bean in the following picture
Picture source: http://baike.baidu.com/view/384257.htm
In this dish, minced meat was usually added and some recipes do call for the use Sichuan fermented soya beans, some are as simple as in this recipe and some called for the use of Chinese winter vegetables etc.. Well, it seems that there is no standard for the dish and as long as the French beans are deep fried, minced meat, some chilli are added, it can be called as Gan bian Si Ji Dou. For this recipe, i have added dried scallops and dried shrimps and that is also considered as optional.
WHAT IS REQUIRED
Servings: 3-4 adults
400 grams of French beans
100 grams of minced port
3-4 dried chillies, cut into big pieces (optional)
1 tablespoon of minced garlic
1 teaspoon of minced ginger
10-15 dried scallops (optional)
1 tablespoons of dried shrimps , pounded (optional)
1 tablespoon of dark soya sauce
Pinches of salt
Sugar to taste
1 teaspoon of sesame oil
STEPS OF PREPARATION
Heat up a pot of oil and deep fry the scallops under medium heat until crispy. shredded the deep fried scallops and set aside. Alternatively, shred the scallop first before deep frying. Note that it took the most 1-2 minutes to deep fry the dried scallops . Addition of scallops is optional.
Use the same hot oil to deep fry the French beans under medium heat. Ensure that the French beans are dry before deep frying to avoid splitting of hot oil. Deep fry for 3-4 minutes until the skin of the beans start to curl. Timing will depends on the thickness of the French beans. Over fried French beans will significantly shrunk in size. Drained and set aside.
Use the same pot or pan, add 1 tablespoon of oil, sauté the minced garlic, ginger and dried shrimps until fragrant. Add the minced meat and stir fry until 70% cooked. Add the dark soya sauce, and followed by the chilli and French bean, stir fry for 1-2 minutes until the flavour are incorporated. Add the salt, sugar to taste, sesame oil and dashes of white pepper. Off the heat and dish up. Drizzle the shredded deep on top of the French beans fried scallops before sharing
To prevent the minced meat from coagulating into one big piece, you have to use the ladle to chop the meat as fast as you can before it was cooked. Alternatively, add one tablespoon of water to the minced meat before put the minced meat to the frying pan. Then it will be easier to separate when stir frying.
This recipe will be captured under simple household dishes series aimed to help new house chefs. I remember some restaurant have used long beans instead of French beans. You can also try to substitute using long bean. The recipe is simple but it is a delicious dish that goes very well with rice and porridge. If you are running out of idea what to cook, possibly you want to give this dish a try.
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