Far too often, beef with broccoli is a gloppy mess. In fact, I rarely order it for takeout as I fear the curse of over-thickened and excessively-sweetened brown sauce will ruin what would otherwise be a perfectly fine meal. But after making Diana Kuan's version from The Chinese Takeout Cookbook at home, I've learned I have nothing to fear from this dish. Her quick tricks--blanching the broccoli and marinating the beef with cornstarch--leave the beef tender and the broccoli bright green. The sauce? It's just thick enough to cling to the stir-fry without turning to sludge, and the minced garlic and ginger add bright punch to the mix.
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Our favorite take on a Chinese-American classic combines seared marinated beef with tender-crunchy broccoli coated in a sweet oyster sauce flavored with garlic, ginger, and scallions. The key to great flavor is extremely high heat. I recommend cooking this directly over a hot coal grill.