Red-Cooked Beef with Cinnamon

  • Active Time 25m
  • Total Time 2h 55m

6 Servings


  • 3 cups water
  • 1 cup medium-dry sherry
  • 3/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 4 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tablespoon five-spice powder
  • 1 tablespoon chopped garlic
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • One 4-pound piece of boneless beef flanken or brisket
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • 1 pound wide or medium dried rice noodles or other long, broad noodles.
  • 6 heads baby bok choy, halved lengthwise, or 1 pound Napa cabbage, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 medium red bell pepper--roasted, peeled, seeded and thinly sliced (optional)
  • Fresh cilantro and mint sprigs, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium nonreactive bowl, combine the water, sherry, orange juice, soy sauce, honey, cinnamon, five-spice powder, garlic, ginger, coriander seeds and crushed red pepper.

In a large enameled cast-iron casserole, heat the oil over moderately high heat. Season the beef with salt and pepper. Add the beef to the casserole and cook until browned, about 5 minutes per side. Drain any fat.

Add the onion and the sherry mixture to the meat, cover and bring to a boil. Cook the meat in the oven for about 2 1/2 hours, or until very tender; turn the meat halfway through cooking.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, cover the rice noodles with cold water and let soften, 20 to 30 minutes. Drain and set aside.

Transfer the beef to a large platter, cover with foil and keep warm. Skim the fat from the broth and add the bok choy and red bell pepper, if using. Simmer over moderate heat until the bok choy is just tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the noodles and simmer just to heat through.

To serve, cut the beef across the grain into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Transfer the noodles to 6 warm shallow bowls and top with slices of beef, red bell pepper and bok choy. Ladle the broth over all and garnish with the cilantro and mint.

MAKE AHEAD: The beef can be refrigerated for up to 2 days. Remove the fat from the surface and reheat in a 350 degrees F oven before proceeding.

Recipe reprinted by permission of Food and Wine. All rights reserved.

RecID 1959

nutrition information per serving

1003 calories; 34g total fat; 151mg cholesterol; 1928mg sodium; 96g carbohydrates; 8g fiber; 74g protein

These nutrition facts are calculated according to the ingredients listed in this recipe. Any substitutions will change these facts. Although we strive for accuracy, please note that food manufacturers occasionally change their food formulas, which could affect the calculations as shown.

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