Flank steak isn't particularly Chinese in origin, but in honor of the Chinese New Year, we decided to pretend by dressing it up with classic Asian flavors.
We start by marinating it in five-spice powder, rice vinegar and soy sauce. Then while the steak is absorbing all those rich flavors, we grate a daikon radish (they resemble giant white carrots, but have a mild peppery bite) and toss it grated fresh ginger, scallions and red bell pepper for a simple slaw with just enough assertiveness to cut through the savory heft of the steak.
If you want to keep this dish lean (it's perfect for holding on to those New Year's resolutions), serve it as is or over brown rice. But if you are willing to embrace carbs, try it slapped on a bun.
Start to finish: 1 hour (30 minutes active)
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon five-spice powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
41/2 tablespoons rice vinegar, divided
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 pound flank steak
1 cup shredded daikon radish, patted dry with paper towels
1 red bell pepper, cored and sliced into thin matchsticks
11/2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
Pinch of salt
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon canola or vegetable oil
In a large zip-close plastic bag, mix together the black pepper, five-spice powder, red pepper flakes, 3 tablespoons of the vinegar and soy sauce. Add the flank steak, seal the bag, then turn to coat evenly. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 2 hours.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir together the daikon radish, bell pepper, ginger, salt, the remaining 11/2 tablespoons of vinegar and the scallions. Set aside.
When you are ready to cook the steak, in a large skillet over medium-high, heat the oil. Add the steak and sear for 4 minutes per side, or until desired doneness. Allow the steak to rest on a cutting board for 8 minutes. Slice the steak thinly across the grain, then serve with the slaw.