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Authentic Vietnamese recipes from the Motherland

Grilled Lemongrass Beef Salad

The smell of grilled beef marinated with lemongrass and garlic is enough to wake up anyone from the dead ... or at least, make your tummy grumble. The smokey char from the grill combined with fragrant lemongrass and garlic makes beef, or any protein, mouthwatering.

For a quick appetizer, I topped a simple salad with slices of grilled lemongrass beef. If you don't have beef, this recipe still works great with pork or chicken. The beef is best grilled. However, you can pan sear in a frying pan or or roast under a broiler. The salad was dressed with a classic Vietnamese fish sauce dipping sauce and sprinkled with chopped roasted peanuts. For a heartier entree version, try adding rice noodles to the salad. 

Grilled Lemongrass Beef Salad

Grilled Lemongrass Beef Salad

Grilled Lemongrass Beef Salad Recipe

Ingredients (Serves 3-4)

Beef marinade

  • 1 lb beef sirloin (pounded flat and thin)
  • 3 stalks lemongrass (tender bottom third only; minced)
  • 1 head garlic (about 6 large cloves; minced)
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
Marinating beef sirloin 

Marinating beef sirloin 

Fish sauce dressing

  • 4 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 6 tablespoons water
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 1-2 Thai chili peppers 
  • 4 tablespoons lime juice
  • 5 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Coconut Soda (CoCo Brand)
  • 1/4 cup roasted peanuts (chopped)

Salad

  • 1 small head lettuce (thinly sliced)
  • 2 small cucumbers (deseeded and thinly sliced)
  • 1 small carrot (peeled and thinly sliced)
  • 1/2 cup mint leaves (thinly sliced)
  • 1/2 cup Thai basil leaves (thinly sliced)
  • 4 cups bean sprouts 

Instructions

  1. For the beef, combine all the ingredients in a bowl and marinate for at least one hour.
  2. For the fish sauce dressing, combine all the ingredients (except the roasted peanuts) and set aside.
  3. Combine all the salad ingredients and gently toss to mix.
  4. Pan sear, broil or grill until lightly charred. If grilling, it should take no more than 3-5 minutes on very high heat. Do not overcook beef as it gets tough. Let the beef rest for a few minutes then slice thinly.
  5. To serve, arrange the salad first then add slices of beef. Top with roasted peanuts and serve the dressing on the side.