My Version of a Thai Menu Staple
This spicy, savory Asian grilled beef salad is pushed over the top by addictively delicious fried potato crisps. It’s an easy, ultra-flavorful summertime meal.
Thai-Style Spicy Grilled Beef Salad
- One 1 1/2-pound dry-aged sirloin steak, trimmed of excess fat
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1 stalk of lemongrass, tender inner bulb only, thinly sliced
- 1 serrano chile, seeded and minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
- 1 medium tomato—halved, seeded and cut into 2-by-1/4-inch strips
- 1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
- 1/2 small cucumber—halved, seeded and thinly sliced
- 1/3 cup loosely packed mint leaves
- 1/3 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves
- 10 leaves basil, cut into ribbons
- 1 tablespoon roasted rice powder (see Note)
- 1 head butter lettuce, leaves separated, for serving
- Peanut oil, for frying
- 2 baking potatoes, trimmed into a rectangle and sliced crosswise 1/16-inch thick
- Kosher salt
Prepare the Salad
Light a grill or preheat a grill pan. Season the steak with salt and pepper. Grill over high heat until medium-rare, about 4 minutes per side. Let rest for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the fish sauce with the lime juice, sugar, lemongrass, chile, garlic and white pepper. In a large bowl, toss the tomato with the shallot, cucumber, mint, cilantro, basil and roasted rice powder.
Make the Potato Crisps
In a large saucepan, heat 2 inches of oil to 375°. Line a baking sheet with paper towels. Fry the potato slices in batches until golden and crisp, about 4 minutes. Transfer to the lined baking sheet. Immediately sprinkle with salt.
Slice the steak against the grain 1/4 inch thick. Add the steak to the salad along with the dressing and toss. Add the potato crisps and toss gently. Spoon the salad into the lettuce leaves and serve.
NOTES Roasted rice powder, known as khao kua pon in Thailand, is available at Asian markets, but you can also make it at home: In a skillet, toast raw white sticky (glutinous) rice over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a mortar or spice grinder and let cool completely, then grind the rice to a powder. The rice powder can be stored in an airtight container for up to 3 months.