Everyone knows my love for Thai food. While I usually prefer to go out and eat it, I occasionally indulge in a bit Thai cooking at home. The flavours are strong but the key is always balance. The Thai version of Beef salad is an old favourite and the perfect summer dish. It really is a complete meal and quite healthy. Oh yeah! and very easy. Make sure you use a good quality beef steak, preferably eye fillet. Here is my version. Authentic or not.
RECIPE FOR FOR THE SALAD
2-3 pieces of good quality eye fillet
2 tomatoes, deseeded and chopped
2 lebanese cucumbers deseeded and sliced
half a small red onion thinly sliced
small bunch of coriander leaves
small bunch of mint leaves
handful of dry roasted peanuts
handful of toasted sesame seeds
fried eschallots for garnishing
FOR THE DRESSING
1/4 cup of good extra virgin olive oil
juice of half a lime
2 tablespoons of fish sauce
1 small red chili finely chopped
a small portion of palm sugar
PUT IT TOGETHER
1. Pre heat your oven to about 180-200 deg C
2. Place the cucumber, tomato, red onion, coriander, mint, peanuts and sesame seeds in a bowl.
3. Sear your steak in a hot pan and sear it a few mins each side.
4. Place the pan (NOT WITH A PLASTIC HANDLE OF COURSE!) into the oven and leave the beef in there for about 10 mins. Whilst that is cooking, whisk up your dressing. Please note, the dressing is “a taste as you go along” thing. It may need more of one ingredient to find the balance. Remember the Thai mantra for cooking. Spicy. sweet, sour and salty. Have fun and experiment.
5. Take the beef out and let it rest for a few mins. Once rested, slice diagonally like they do in restaurants and toss it in with the salad ingredients. Give it a good toss!
6. Present salad with fried eschallots on top for garnish. (fried eschallots ca be readily bought at most Asian grocery stores)