Beef in Black Bean Sauce is a classic Chinese entree that features takenooko (bamboo), which is used frequently in Japanese cooking. While many of the Chinese recipes on my blog are Chinese recipes which have been altered to suit Japanese taste, this dish reminds me of a meal that you could order in a restaurant in Beijing. While it is possible to find Fermented Black Beans (known as douchi in Chinese)in Japan, it’s not a common ingredient in Japanese cooking and sometimes you need to hunt around for it.
However, country of origin aside, this simple and savory stir fry is easy to make and delicious.
Bamboo is a tough vegetable to prepare when purchased fresh. It has to be peeled and boiled for a long time to soften, and even then there may be parts of the chutes that are hard to eat. When I make this dish I usually opt for bamboo chutes that are pre-boiled (available in some Asian groceries) or canned. The pre-boiled bamboo tastes as good as if you prepare it from scratch, but there is a lot less effort involved.
Sometimes at my house we enjoy Chinese food night where we make a Chinese entree along with an appetizer or soup, and Chinese Fried Rice or noodles. So for example, Beef in Black Bean Sauce can be enjoyed as a Chinese entree along with roast pork fried rice, shumai dumplings, and oolong tea to round out the meal.
But whether as part of an exquisite Chinese meal, or as a simple entree, give this one a try and let me know what you think!