Serving
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Salad with Beef & Mint
Viet / California

Makes
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
3-1/2#  
***
1-1/2 hr  
Yes
A delicious and rather substantial salad - it could pass as a light main course on a hot summer day. It's sure to get raves from everyone - except a few meat-and-potatoes folks with an aversion to intense flavors and even a hint chili. I call it Viet / California because I'm not sure they have red cabbage in Vietnam.


1
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1/4
2
1
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3/4
1
1
1/2
1/4
2
1/2
2
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5
10
4
12
1
1/2
4
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ar
#
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t
T
T
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in
cl

c
c
T
t
T
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oz
oz
oz
oz
c
c
oz
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Beef, lean (1)
-- Marinade
Cayenne Powder (2)
Fish Sauce (3)
Palm Sugar (4)
-- Dressing
Ginger root
Garlic
Thai Chili
Lime Juice
Fish Sauce
Palm Sugar
Salt
Water
-- Salad
Carrots
Cucumber (5)
Red Onion
Red Cabbage
Mint (6)
Basil, Thai
Bean Sprouts
-- Garnish
(See Note-7)
  1. Slice BEEF into slabs about 3/8 inch thick.
  2. Mix all Marinade items and massage into beef. Marinate for at least 30 minutes, turning and massaging occasionally.
  3. Meanwhile, get your grill started (if using charcoal) or preheat your broiler if using it.
  4. Slice GINGER very thin and chop fine. Crush GARLIC and fine. Chop Chili fine. Mix all and pound to a paste in a mortar.
  5. Squeeze Lime Juice and mix together all Dressing items.
  6. Drain Beef and grill or broil at a very high temperature until well browned on the outside but not overdone on the inside.
  7. Slice Beef thin across the grain and at a slant so the slices are a little wider than the piece is thick. Slices should be about 1-1/2 inches long.
  8. Mix Beef slices with 3 T Dressing mix and marinate for about 30 minutes, turning now and then.
  9. Julienne CARROTS and CUCUMBERS (a julienning vegetable peeler is very helpfull here).
  10. Slice ONION in half lengthwise, then crosswise into very thin slices. Shred CABBAGE thin and to a maximum length of about 2 inches.
  11. Separate leaves from MINT and BASIL, discarding stems (see Note-6), then shred medium.
  12. Mix all Salad items together with the Dressing and the Beef strips. Chill for a while, retossing now and then to redistribute the dressing.
NOTES:
  1. Beef:   I use a chuck roll roast or chuck shoulder clod roast about 1-3/4 inches thick and cut it crosswise into slices about 3/8 inch thick. Round is tougher, too lean and with less flavor. Of course you can use more expensive cuts if you wish.
  2. Chili:   The amount of Cayenne pepper and Thai chilis makes a salad with a noticeable bite - though it comes on slowly. You can use less powerful chili powder if you want it milder. For details see our Chili Page.
  3. Fish Sauce:   As essential to Southeast Asian cuisine as it was to Imperial Rome, it's available in just about all Asian markets. Thai and Vietnamese are best. For details see our Fish Sauce - Introduction page.
  4. Palm Sugar:   Available in all Southeast Asian markets and some Indian markets. A syrup is made but I've never seen it, so I deal with chunks, first crushing them in a mortar, then grinding the fragments to powder in my spice grinder. If you don't have it use a light brown lightly flavored cane sugar like Turbinado.
  5. Cucumbers:   Preferably use thin cukes that don't need to be peeled or seeded, Persian, Japanese or similar. If all you have is the standard waxed green blimps, peel and seed them, and use a few ounces more to compensate.
  6. Herbs:   The measures given here are for whole leaves packed down gently into a cup measure.
  7. Garnish:   This salad is often served with a garnish of fried shrimp chips, or a bowl of them on the side. I couldn't find my shrimp chips so I fried up some rice thread noodles which puff up the same way. Peanuts have been suggested as a garnish but I don't care for them used that way.
  8. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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