Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Vietnamese Lemongrass Beef on Vermicelli Salad

I looooove Vietnamese food! It's such a shame that if you live in a Whitewashed suburb, procuring all of the herbs required for a Vietnamese feast can be a difficult, not to mention expensive, proposition. Thankfully, we have a nice herb garden at my parents house, rife with mint, coriander and my favorite, Vietnamese mint! Vietnamese food is fresh, healthy and light- but once you start on it, you will crave it forever. This is another recipe from the Nguyen family of Red Lantern fame, and once again, it is impeccable. 

Ingredients (serves 4 as main, 6 as entree)

Lemongrass Beef

  • 500gm rump steak, thinly sliced
  • 2 large stalks lemongrass, white part only, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 4 tbsp fried shallots
  • 4 tbsp toasted, crushed peanuts
  • 3 large shallots, sliced

Vermicelli Salad

  • 200gm rice vermicelli
  • 1 handful mint
  • 1 handful Vietnamese mint
  • 1 handful coriander
  • 2 large handfuls bean sprouts
  • 1 cup shredded iceberg lettuce
  • 1 lebanese cucumber, cut into matchsticks

Fish Sauce Dressing

  • 4 tbsp fish sauce
  • 4 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 2 birds eye chillis, chopped finely
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped finely
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • Juice of 1 lime


Fish Sauce Dressing

Combine the fish sauce, vinegar and sugar in a small saucepan and heat until sugar is dissolved.
Transfer to a bowl and mix through the lime, chilli and garlic
Refrigerate until ready to pour over salad

Vermicelli Salad

Place the noodles in a large bowl and cover with boiling water.
Let sit until the noodles are tender then drain and rinse with cold water until cold. Let drain

Divide the bean sprouts over the 4 serving plates
Top with the noodles.
In a bowl, mix through the lettuce, herbs and cucumber.

Evenly divide the herb mixture over the 4 serving plates.

Spoon 2 tbsp of the fish sauce dressing over each of the salads

Lemongrass Beef

Coat the beef in 1/2 the garlic, 1/2 the lemongrass and all of the fish sauce and let sit for 10 minutes.

Heat half of the oil in a wok over medium heat and add 1/2 the shallots and 1/2 the remaining lemongrass.
Saute until fragrant.

Turn the wok heat up high and add 1/2 the beef, stir frying for 2 minutes.

Remove the beef from the pan and repeat the process for the remaining shallots, lemongrass and beef.
Return all of the beef mixture to the wok and add the sugar, and season with salt and pepper.
Divide the beef over the vermicelli salads.
Top with fried shallots and peanuts

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