Vinegar-dipped beef and seafood

Vinegar-dipped beef and seafood

Bo do bien nhung giam

By
From
South East Asian Food
Serves
6-8

The double quantity given here is in recognition of the popularity of this dish as party food. For an ordinary meal you could select either beef or seafood only and cook in half the liquid.

Ingredients

Quantity Ingredient
500g beef fillet
3 thin slices fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, roasted in a dry pan until brown
1 small egg
2 brown onions, peeled and sliced lengthwise
250g raw prawns, shelled
1 small garlic clove, smashed and chopped
pepper, to taste
250g squid tubes
1 spring onion, chopped, green part only
coconut water from 2 green coconuts or 2 x 400 ml cans coconut juice
300ml rice vinegar
1/4 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1-1 1/2 teaspoons sugar, to taste

Method

  1. Slice the beef into paper-thin slices and arrange them in the centre of a serving plate. Scatter ginger and sesame seeds over and shell the egg on top, taking care not to break the yolk. Arrange the sliced brown onion in a circle around the edge.
  2. Make the shelled prawns crunchy according to the instructions in Cooking methods and techniques. Remove the black thread and cut them in half lengthwise. Mix lightly with garlic and pepper, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready. Wash the squid tubes, score them diagonally and cut them into 5 x 2 cm pieces.
  3. Arrange the prawns in the middle of another serving plate, scattering a little chopped spring onion over as garnish. Arrange the squid in a circle around the edge.
  4. Put a steamboat or a chafing dish with its own source of heat on the table.
  5. In a saucepan combine the coconut water and the vinegar. Add salt to taste and a little sugar, but not too much of the latter as the liquid should be distinctly sour. Bring the mixture to the boil on the stove then transfer it to the steamboat, putting hot coals down the chimney to keep it on the boil. If you are using a chafing dish, pour from the saucepan into that and light the attached heat source.
  6. Put a plate of Prepared Rice Papers covered with plastic film, a Sour fruit plate, a plate of Lightly pickled salad vegetables and a Herb salad plate on the table. Also provide individual dishes of Basic dipping sauce (Nuoc cham) and Anchovy dipping sauce (Nuoc cham voi mam nem).
  7. Using chopsticks break the egg and mash it into the beef until well mixed. Diners select one or two pieces of meat and some onion from the meat plate or some prawns and squid and drop them into the bubbling vinegar mixture until they are cooked to taste. They place a rice paper flat on a plate in front of them, putting a small piece of lettuce, some beansprouts and a selection of sour fruits, pickled vegetables and/or herb salad on one edge and fold the rice paper once over the vegetables. The pieces of meat and onion or seafood are arranged on top of the fold, the sides of the rice paper are tucked in and everything is rolled up into a parcel the shape of a fat cigar. The parcels are eaten with the fingers and dipped into sauces of choice (the anchovy sauce is a favourite with meat rolls). Repeat until the meat and seafood have been used up then abandon the sour cooking liquid.
  8. These dipped meats and the vegetables may also be eaten with noodles. Serve as you would Rice noodles with marinated pork (Bun thit nuong – Northern version).
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