Whenever the weather gets cold, or when we are being hit by a winter storm, I make stew or soup. That is a tradition I learn from my grandma’s kitchen. I also learn how to stew beef rough flank from her.
Unlike regular beef flank, rough flank consists of tendon and tough tissues. They are usually very tough and take a long time to cook. I assume the slightly unpleasant look and long cooking time prohibit its popularity in America. You can only find them in most Asian grocery stores but not in American ones. You may also find beef flank in Vietnamese pho too.
Don’t try to substitute with regular flank. After proper long cooking time, beef rough flank can be very tasty. Its attaching tendon will become soft and tender but still a little bit al-dente. That is why I like it so much. The texture and beefy flavor are very charming and additive.
1 large piece of beef rough flank（weighs about 2 pounds, sold in most Asian grocery stores）
1 piece of ginger root, smashed
1 to 2 bay leaves
1 star anise
2 tablespoons rice cooking wine
about 3 quarts water
salt to taste
chopped green onion
Clean and trim extra fat away from beef rough flank. Soak it in cold water for 2 hours. Change the water twice in between.
With a sharp knife, cut the flank into 1 by 2 inches size
Peel and cut the daikon into the same size
Fill a cast iron with water. Add beef flank, ginger and rice cooking wine. Cook over high heat until it boils. During this process, you need to skim off any impurities and dark bubbles that come to the top.
Cover with lid. Reduce the heat to simmer for 4 to 5 hours. The though tissues will break down after long simmer time and become soft and tender.
This Le Creuset 4 1/4 quarts soup pot is one of my favorite pots in the kitchen. It does great job in stewing and making soup.
2 hours into simmering, add star anise and bay leaves
4 to 5 hours later, the broth becomes beautiful golden color. That is how you know it is a good pot of stew. Pressure cooker can’t do that for you. Only time and slow simmering can make it happen.
Turn up the heat; add daikon and salt to taste.
Cook for another 15 to 20 minutes. It is time to enjoy!
Sprinkle with chopped green onion and cilantro. Serve hot immediately.