Vietnamese beef lettuce cups
Vietnamese beef lettuce cupsSubscribe to Sainsbury's magazine
Our super minty Vietnamese beef lettuce cups are perfect for a party or as a relaxed starter
For the beef
- 600g beef escalopes
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 stalk lemongrass, very finely chopped
- 1 tsp ground turmeric
- 2 tbsp Thai fish sauce
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 tsp caster sugar
For the minted cucumber salad
- 1⁄2 cucumber, deseeded and cut into 5mm cubes
- 1 x 28g pack mint, leaves picked and finely chopped
- finely grated zest and juice of 1 lime
- 1 tbsp Thai fish sauce
- 1 red bird eye chilli, finely chopped (to taste, optional)
- 2 tsp caster sugar
- 3 Little Gem lettuces
- 60g salted peanuts, roughly chopped
- 6-8 radishes, trimmed and cut into matchsticks
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
Marinate the beef the night before, or freeze in a tightly sealed food bag (in which case defrost overnight in the fridge). Remove the marinated beef from the fridge an hour before cooking. The salad can be made 2-3 hours ahead.
- Slice the beef escalopes into 1cm-thick strips and add to a bowl. Add the garlic, lemongrass, turmeric, fish sauce, vegetable oil, sugar and a good grind of black pepper. Stir together so that each piece of beef is evenly coated. Cover and set aside to marinate for an hour at room temperature, or overnight in the fridge.
Tip For this recipe, you’ll need 8-12 metal or flat bamboo skewers (soak bamboo skewers in water for an hour before using).
Mix together all the ingredients for the cucumber salad. Taste – it should be pleasingly sour, salty, hot and a little sweet. Add more fish sauce or perhaps a little pinch of salt if you think it needs it. Chill in the fridge until you are ready to eat.
When you are ready to cook, thread several pieces of beef onto each skewer, threading each pieceback and forth in a wavy ribbon to secure. Heat a griddle pan until it’s really hot – you can also use a hot barbecue if you prefer. Grill the skewers for around 8 minutes, turning a few times so they cook evenly, until the beef is crisp on the edges. When they are cooked, use a fork to pull the meat off the skewers and into a bowl.
While the beef is grilling, separate the lettuces into individual leaves and spread out over a large plate or platter. Finely slice the hearts of each lettuce and stir through the cucumber salad. Into each lettuce leaf, add a little of the cooked beef and top with a spoon of cucumber salad. Sprinkle over the peanuts and radishes and drizzle over a little sesame oil. Serve immediately, using your hands to eat – have plenty of napkins on standby.