Braised top blade and potatoes (紅燒牛肉和馬鈴薯)



I actually bought meat yesterday. It was a little bit shocking. Let me explain: You see, living in SF (in the Tenderloin, no less) means I have very limited means of getting meat. Additionally, my fridge is absolutely tiny (think of those little dinky things you had in a college dorm room that can hold 3.2 cubic feet <– YUP, that’s MY apartment’s fridge), and storing meat is shady at best. So I’ve been living as a somewhat involuntary (but definitely not unhappy because I absolutely love veggies) vegetarian.

In any case, I went running yesterday morning into Japantown and hit up three different markets: Nijiya, Safeway, and Ichibankan. When I was wandering Safeway (and waiting for Ichibankan to open), my eye fell on the meat section. In particular, there was three cartons of chuck top blade! How many times I have been sent to the supermarket by my mother for this meat only to never see it… BUT THERE IT WAS!! And on SALE, to boot!

Needless to say, my run (a futile attempt to work off some of this Thanksgiving flab) was cut short by grocery shopping. It was good times.

So last night I prepared my most favorite dish that my mother makes. I always ask for it, and she almost never makes it for me (maybe that is why I like it so much? Absence makes the heart stomach grow fonder… ?) Haha, in any case, here is the recipe. I promise, it is delicious.

Braised top blade and potatotes (Mom’s 紅燒牛肉和馬鈴薯)

Serves 2-4


  1. 1 lb. chuck top blade beef (you can recognize it because it has a thick strip of tendon right down the middle)
  2. 2 potatoes (peeled and cut into 1-in. square chunks)
  3. 2 tbsp soy sauce
  4. 2 tbsp sugar
  5. water


  1. Cut the beef into large, rectangular chunks (basically perpendicular to the strip of tendon down the middle).
  2. Place the beef, soy sauce, and sugar into a large pot.
  3. Fill the pot with water just enough to cover the meat.
  4. Allow the pot to come to a boil, then turn the heat down to medium and allow the liquid to simmer with the lid partially covering the pot.
  5. Add the potatoes after approximately half an hour.
  6. Let the liquid reduce until it is a thick sauce – approximately a total of 45-60 minutes, depending on how much water was initially added.
  7. Check and stir occasionally to avoid the meat and potatoes from sticking to the pot.
  8. Serve!


**Note: thanks to an amazing friend (Derk!), I am now in posession of an awesome camera (Canon EOS Rebel XT!!), so I will be once again updating at a “normal” pace (however normal a law student going through the throes of finals can actually BE “normal,” that is). As I try to improve my cooking, so shall I try to improve my photography. Wish me luck!

3 Responses to “Braised top blade and potatoes (紅燒牛肉和馬鈴薯)”

  1. What gorgeous photos, really impressive. This top blade sounds and looks great.

  2. 2 Jing

    That’s the camera I have too! It’s a very very nice camera. I suggest getting a better lens for it – the 50mm f1.8 has really good glass and is pretty cheap.

  3. Comfort food at its BEST! Looks really yummy!

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