Monday, October 20, 2008

Recipe: Quick Thai Beef Salad

I never know quite what to prepare for lunch. Sandwiches seem easiest but I'm always trying to cut carbs, so I'm hesitant to eat one every day. And plain old salads just leave me unfulfilled. A search for low carb lunch options on Food and Wine's site turned up this recipe for Quick Thai Beef Salad, and it was a big time winner.

I improvised a bit because I couldn't find thai chiles, so I used jalapenos instead, and I skipped the celery leaves because frankly it sounded weird, and I didn't care to have a bunch of celery rotting in my fridge after I'd used a couple of leaves. And being totally spacy, I also forgot to use the shallot I'd bought. Still, even with all that, the dish was simple, flavorful and tasty.

The cucumber and tomato make this dish feel fresh and healthy, and the jalapenos gave it a nice kick. Best of all, the roast beef requires no effort. Just buy it in a chunk from the deli and slice. How easy is that?

The entire prep time really did take about 15 minutes, and I ate all 4 servings myself over the course of the next 4 days. Yes that's gross, but the boyfriend was out of town and I started a new freelance job so my kitchen and shopping time were extremely limited. Nice to have something tasty enough that it's worth 4 meals!

The only drawback? The much dreaded jalapeno hands! That's what I call the god-awful burning sensation that just won't quit that comes from touching jalapeno seeds. Seriously, it's next to impossible to soothe this burn. You don't even want to know what I've tried to ease the pain (butter, milk and cold compresses are just some of the home remedies I've tested to no avail!) Just don't handle jalapeno seeds at all if you can help it, but do try this yummy and easy recipe.

Quick Thai Beef Salad
From Food and Wine Magazine


  1. 6 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  2. 5 tablespoons Asian fish sauce
  3. 2 Thai chiles, minced
  4. 1 teaspoon sugar
  5. 1/2 pound thinly sliced rare beef
  6. 5 small scallions, cut into 1-inch lengths
  7. 3 medium shallots, thinly sliced
  8. 1 medium tomato, halved and sliced
  9. 1 cup thinly sliced peeled cucumber
  10. 1/2 cup chopped celery leaves


  1. In a large bowl, mix the lime juice, fish sauce, chiles and sugar; stir to dissolve the sugar. Add the beef, scallions, shallots, tomato, cucumber and celery leaves, toss gently and serve.



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