A great little appetizer that can be made ahead and looks, as well as tastes, fabulous.
I have made it for summer parties, Asian-themed dinners and most recently for a thanksgiving celebration (It was the earth in between the abundance of the sea and the heavens.)
(only slightly altered from the recipe collection ‘The Picnic Hamper’)
Serves 6 as a starter
1 red chili
80ml ketjap manis
60-80ml lime juice
1 tbsp sesame oil
250g beef (steak)
2 cucumbers or 12 wonton cups
1/2 stick of lemongrass
40-60ml lime juice
1 red chili
1 tbsp fish sauce
- Deseed and chop chili. Place into a zip-lock bag or a non-metallic dish.
- Add ketjap, lime and sesame oil.
- Cut beef into strips and add to the marinade. Store in the fridge for at least 2 hours and up to 24.
- Allow the beef to come to room temperature before continuing.
- Heat a frying pan and briefly flash fry the beef on a high heat. Make sure not to over-cook the meat.
- If using cucumber: Cut the cucumbers into 12 slices (about 3cm each). Using a spoon or melon scooper remove some of the core to shape them into little cups. (If making a little ahead keep them upside down on kitchen paper in an airtight container.)
- Finely grate (or chop) the lemongrass.
- Deseed and chop the chili.
- Combine the fish sauce with the lemongrass and chili.
- When you are ready to serve chop the mint and coriander.
- Mix the dressing and herbs with the beef.
- Spoon a little of the beef into each of the (cucumber) cups.
Tips & Variations
The beef salad as well as the cucumber / woton cups can be prepared ahead. The salad looks fresher if you add the herbs at the last moment, but this is not a must.