Beef and Basil Stir-Fry

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Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 4

Thai basil, with its beautiful purple stems, adds an incredible flavor and aroma to this dish, but if you can’t find it, sweet basil will work fine as well. This stir-fry is wonderful served over steamed rice or fresh Asian noodles.


  • 1/4 cup (2 fl. oz./60 ml) soy sauce
  • 3 Tbs. sherry
  • 1 Tbs. honey
  • 1 tsp. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbs. canola oil
  • 1 lb. (500 g) flank steak, thinly sliced, then cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) pieces
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1-inch (2.5-cm) piece peeled fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 yellow squash, cut into 1/2-inch (12-mm) matchsticks
  • 2 carrots, cut into 1/2-inch (12-mm) matchsticks
  • 4 oz. (125 g) sugar snap peas, trimmed and halved
  • 1/4 cup (1/4 oz./7 g) small fresh basil leaves, preferably Thai


In a small bowl, stir together the soy sauce, sherry, honey and cornstarch.

In a wok or large fry pan over high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the oil. Season the steak pieces with salt and pepper. Add to the pan and cook, tossing to sear on all sides, until browned but still rare inside, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Pour off any  fat from the pan.

Return the pan to high heat and warm the remaining 1 Tbs. oil. Add the garlic and ginger and stir-fry until fragrant, about 1 minute, taking care not to let the garlic and ginger brown. Add the squash, carrots and sugar snap peas and stir-fry for 4 minutes. Add the steak and the soy sauce mixture and stir to combine. Cook, stirring often, until the sauce thickens, about 3 minutes. Top with the basil leaves and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma One Pot of the Day, by Kate McMillan (Weldon Owen, 2012)

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