Friday, 2 July 2010

Cooking: Thai beef salad

This recipe was taken from my recent cookery class at Sailors Thai, the famous Sydney restaurant originally opened by David Thompson. The recipes and techniques are very similar to those found in the books Thai Food and Thai Street Food.

Obtaining the ingredients for this recipe is going to be easier if you live close to a Thai supermarket. I can strongly recommend both Mae Cheng and Thai Pathong on Campbell St in Sydney. Other recipes in this mini-series:
- Thai Fish Salad
- Thai Green Curry Paste
- Thai Green Chicken Curry
- Thai coconut milk chronicles

The Thai Beef Salad was the easiest of the three dishes that I cooked for my Thai banquet. But that didn't make it any less tasty! I've never eaten beef in Thailand before - or even seen it on any menus - but I'm assured by various Thai friends that it is an authentic ingredient.

I really liked the dressing of this salad. Deceptively simple, the zing of the lime, saltiness of fish sauce and chilli brought everything together.

Serves 4 as part of the banquet of three dishes.

350g of rump steak
4 red shallots, sliced
2 tbsp of long leaf / saw tooth coriander, shredded
Half a bunch of mint leaves, picked
Half a bunch of coriander leaves, picked
1 tbsp of ground roasted rice
ABC / Sweet Soy sauce

For the dressing:
Pinch of white sugar
2 tbsp lime juice
3 tbsp fish sauce
Large pinch of chilli powder

1.  Marinade the beef in the ABC sauce.

2.  Mix all of the ingredients for the dressing in a bowl. Taste the dressing which should be hot, sour and salty.

3.  Pick the herbs and shred the long leaf coriander and place in an air tight container in the fridge until needed. Thinly slice the red shallots and place in a bowl.

4.  To make the roasted rice, place uncooked glutinous rice in a pan and cook on a low heat, turning the rice so that it doesn't burn. When the rice has a slight golden colour remove from the heat and cool. Once the rice is cool, blitz in a coffee grinder until you have a fine powder.

5.  Remove beef from the marinade and BBQ until medium rare. When the beef is cook, rest for 10 minutes and then thinly slice against the grain.

6. Combine the herbs, red shallots and beef in a bowl. Coat with the dressing and arrange on a plate with the sliced cucumber. Sprinkle the roasted rice over the salad.

When I made this salad at home I didn't bother with the roasted rice. In the restaurant we were told it would add to the texture, but I didn't think it added that much. We've all heard of slicing meet against the grain to make it tender, but it's not something I always do. I will from now on, it makes a real difference!


  1. OK Richard, keep practising and learning as much as you can, because when you get back you are going to cook us up a TREAT!

  2. You research a good Thai supermarket and I'll cook for you!

  3. You have to try this raw! It's so good. There's a thai/laoation restaurant near my house that I go to and it is the best! Squeeze lemon over the top and serve it with sticky rice and ox tongue *drools*

    Come down to Cabra and I'll take you to cheap and authentic thai/lao restaurants (Laoation food is pretty similar to thai)

  4. You don't need to ask me twice!

  5. :) Well me know when you want to come down for lunch

  6. Looks sensational and authentic. Yummo! The Thai/Lao restaurants in Cabra sound great

  7. The best thing about cooking classes is when you're able to take what you've learnt home and do it yourself =) Yumm yumm!