Gluten-Free Seared Five-Spice Steak and Snap Peas Recipe


A thick, sticky sauce with complex sweet and Asian flavors is what makes this recipe by Olivia Mack Anderson (who’s also behind the Char Power recipes on page 44) extra special. It’s also versatile—skip the meat and go all seared veggies if you like. It’s fierce no matter how you slice it.
Servings 4 people


  • 4 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 small shallot chopped
  • 2 teaspoons peeled minced fresh ginger
  • 1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons tamari sauce
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 pound sirloin tip sliced into thin, bite-size strips
  • 1 pound sugar snap peas trimmed
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds for garnish (optional)


  1. In a large skillet, heat 2 teaspoons of the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, shallot, and ginger and sauté until fragrant and slightly golden, about 2 minutes. Stir in the five-spice powder, sugar, vinegar, tamari, pepper flakes, and 2 tablespoons water. Cook until the water evaporates and the sauce is thick, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and reserve in the pan.
  2. Heat the remaining 2 teaspoons oil in a wok or heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat until very hot. Add the sirloin and sear, stirring frequently, until cooked to your preference, about 1 minute for medium-rare. Transfer the meat to a plate and reserve. Add the snap peas to the hot pan and sear, stirring occasionally, until the pea pods are blistered on all sides, about 2 minutes.
  3. Gently reheat the pan with the sauce. To the pan, add the snap peas and the steak strips, but not any juices from the plate, toss to coat, and heat until warmed through. Divide among 4 plates, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and serve.

Photo: Maren Caruso

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