Chinese Beef Stew with Daikon

A classic melt-in-your-mouth Chinese beef stew with tender daikon radish. The sauce is delicious and helps the beef braise to perfect tenderness every time. The flavourings star anise, cinnamon stick, dried chenpi (mandarin peel), Chinese five spice, and the classic Chu Hou paste provide the authentic taste you would get from a Hong Kong-style café. This stew pairs perfectly with steamed rice or a bowl of noodles.
Yield 6 Servings Prep. Time 20 min Cooking Time 135 min Total Time 155 min


Here are the following ingredients:

  • 1 dried chenpi (dried mandarin peel)
  • 1 cup (250 mL) warm water
  • 2 lb (1 kg) Beef Brisket or Blade Pot Roast, cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) pieces
  • 2-inch (5 cm) piece gingerroot, cut into 6 slices, divided
  • 6 star anise, divided
  • Cold water
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) sunflower or canola oil
  • 1 shallot, diced
  • 5 to 6 cloves garlic
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) Chinese five spice powder
  • 2 tbsp (30 mL) Chinese cooking wine
  • 1 tbsp (15 mL) EACH oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, soy sauce and dark soy sauce
  • 4 tsp (20 mL) Chu Hou paste
  • ½ tsp (2 mL) salt
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1-inch (2.5 cm) piece rock sugar, about 26 g (or 1 tbsp/15 mL packed brown sugar)
  • 1 daikon radish (about 1¼ lb/625 g), scrubbed and cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) cubes
  • 3 tbsp (45 mL) cornstarch

Shopping List

Here are the following shopping items to buy:


Follow these cooking methods/directions:

  1. Combine chenpi and warm water in a bowl. Let soak for about 15 minutes. Drain, discarding soaking water.
  2. Meanwhile, combine beef, 3 of the gingerroot slices and 3 of the star anise in a medium stock pot or Dutch oven. Fill the pot with cold water (about 5 cups/1.25 L), or enough to cover the beef. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Skim away any foam from surface.
  3. Drain beef in a colander; discard the gingerroot slices and star anise. Rinse beef and the pot with cold water to remove any excess foam. Set aside separately to dry and let cool.
  4. Return pot to medium-high heat. Add oil and swirl to coat; add shallot, garlic to taste, cinnamon stick, reserved beef and remaining gingerroot slices and star anise. Cook, stirring, for 4 to 5 minutes until beef is lightly browned. Stir in Chinese five spice powder, Chinese cooking wine, oyster sauce, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, dark soy sauce and Chu Hou paste. Cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes until the beef is coated with the sauce. Stir in salt, bay leaves, sugar, rehydrated chenpi and 3 cups (750 mL) water. Bring to a boil.
  5. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 1 hour, turning beef occasionally, and checking after 30 minutes to ensure there is enough water to prevent the meat from drying out. The liquid should have reduced to about half the original amount. If there isn’t enough liquid, add up to ½ cup (125 mL) water.
  6. Stir in daikon and return to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 to 45 minutes until beef and radish are tender.
  7. Stir 3 tbsp (45 mL) cold water into cornstarch in a small bowl, mixing until smooth. Gradually stir into the stew. Bring to a boil, stirring, Boil for 2 to 3 minutes or until sauce has thickened slightly. Discard bay leaves.