Thai Beef Salad

This is a good way to make one steak feed two. I used a piece of skirt and cooked it briefly on the griddle – oiled, salt-seasoned as each side hit the pan – but let it rest covered with a stretch of clingfilm – while I prepared everything else for this salad. I also added a handful of green beans cut in half and boiled in salted water for 2 minutes then chilled in cold water to arrest cooking. The steak is then smeared with soy and toasted sesame oil after it’s been sliced and piled over the salad. It is truly delicious and almost diet food.

Serves 2
Prep: 20 min
Cook: 15 min

250g thick piece skirt, sirloin or rump steak
1 tbsp groundnut oil
2 tbsp Maldon salt
½ (half) tsp sugar
2 tbsp lime juice
1 tbsp Thai fish sauce (nam pla)
1 shallot or small red onion
1 red birds eye chilli
10cm length cucumber or 1 small/Lebanese cu
6 cherry tomatoes
1 little gem lettuce heart
handful rocket or mixed leaves
few sprigs coriander
about 10 mint leaves
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp soy sauce

Rub the steak with groundnut oil. Spread salt out on a plate. Heat the griddle or heavy frying pan for several minutes until scorchingly hot. Press one side of the steak into the salt and cook, salt side down, for 3-6 minutes depending on thickness, until crusty. Salt the exposed side and repeat. Rest on a board/work surface for 10 minutes. Dissolve the sugar in the lime juice and fish sauce in a mixing bowl. Halve, peel and finely slice the shallot and stir into the bowl. Finely chop the chilli, discarding seeds, and add that too. Peel the cucumber, halve lengthways, scrape out the seeds with a teaspoon and thinly slice into half moons. Halve the tomatoes. Separate the lettuce leaves, rinse and shake dry. Add all the salad ingredients – cu, tom, lettuce, rocket, coriander and mint – to the bowl and toss thoroughly. Spread out on a platter. Slice the steak in thin yet chunky slices across the width, smear with toasted sesame oil and soy sauce, then pile over the salad, adding any meat juices. That’s it.