Given the physical demands and time constraints of her profession, Chan favours nutritious, protein-rich foods that can be prepared simply. Far from the stereotype of the underfed ballerina (in fact, The National Ballet of Canada has been a leader in educating dancers about the importance of healthful eating), Chan loves meat and describes herself as a big eater. "I never get tired of the taste," says Chan of this beef steak, which makes its way onto her dinner table at least once a week when she's not on tour. The recipe was handed down from her grandmother, who lived with the family in Vancouver. Serve this stir-fried steak with steamed rice and stir-fried Chinese broccoli for a full, nutritous meal.
- Portion size 4 servings
Slice beef across the grain into 1/4-inch (5 mm) thick slices; pound each to flatten slightly. Set aside.
Marinade: With back of knife, crush onions and ginger; place in large bowl. Stir in wine and 1/2 cup (125 mL) water; let stand for 10 minutes. With slotted spoon, discard onions and ginger. Stir in flour, cornstarch, soy sauce and pepper; add beef, stirring to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
Seasoning sauce: In bowl, whisk together sugar, soy sauce, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, cornstarch and 1 cup (250 mL) water; set aside.
In skillet or wok, heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) of the oil; discarding marinade, stir-fry beef, in batches and adding more oil as necessary, until browned yet red in centre, about 1 minute. Remove beef and set aside.
Discard any oil in pan. Add seasoning sauce and bring to boil; return beef to pan.