Saturday 22 October 2011

October 2011 - Vietnamese Steak with Watercress

Finally getting around to posting October's delicious magazine recipe. I made this a week ago but just hadn't gotten around to writing any posts the past week. It was a long week this past one, I hope that the next one will be better. 

There were a number of recipes that I was interested in making from this issue and I hope to go back and get them made over the next little while. The first of these is Ben O'Donoghue's Yoghurt-marinated fish wrapped in zucchini. Such an unusual sounding combination. It says to use firm white fish fillets but I wonder if it could be made with salmon. I might try it out and see what happens. 

I was also interested in two different dishes in the Tuesday Night Cooking feature. The first is a Thai Pork Vermicelli Salad. Made with marinated pork tenderloin and vermicelli noodles it will be a wonderful meal during summer and will be just as good cold as warm I am sure. I have made a number of different salads using vermicelli in the pasta and they are always very light and refreshing. I am sure this one will be also. 

The other recipe in the Tuesday Night Cooking feature was the Middle Eastern Lamb Tart. It is a free form tart using filo spread with hummus and then topped with a spiced lamb mince mixture. It looks like it would be easy to make even though I have never had a lot of luck with filo pastry. Perhaps with something like this it would be okay since I am not having to try and line a dish with it. I think that you could probably do your mince mixture ahead of time to make the final cooking even quicker. 

In the end though I decided to go with Bill Granger's Vietnamese Steak with Watercress. It was a very simple meal to make that had a lot of flavour. It was a tad oily for me so I would probably cut down on that a bit next time but it was definitely very good. I added some blanched halved sugar snap peas as well as the asparagus to up the vegetable content a bit. 

Vietnamese Steak with Watercress

  • 600 g sirloin steak, cut into 4 cm x 4 cm pieces
  • 3 garlic cloves, roughly chopped 
  • 2 tsp white sugar 
  • 1 1/2 tbsp light olive oil 
  • Pinch ground white pepper (I used about 1/4 tsp) 
  • 2 bunches asparagus, trimmed, sliced on an angle  (blanched)
  • handful sugar snap peas, trimmed, halved on an angle (blanched)
  • Large handful watercress
  • 1/4 c white wine 
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce 
  • 2 tsp fish sauce
  • 20 g softened unsalted butter
  • Crush garlic with sea salt in a mortar, combine with garlic, sugar, 1 tbsp oil, white pepper, 1 tsp salt and steak. Cover and let marinate for at least an hour. 
  • Heat pan over high heat and add remaining oil (I used grapeseed here).
  •  Cook beef and marinade, without touching for 1 minuted. Turn beef and cook for a further 1 minute. Shake the pan for 30 seconds to cook the sides. Remove beef from pan, keep warm. 
  • Add wine, soy & fish sauces and butter to fry pan and cook until reduced and thickened. 
  • Combine asparagus, snap peas and watercress on a plater, top with pieces of steak and then drizzle with the sauce. 


  1. It's a great issue. I've cooked from it often. I just love Matt Preston's calamari roll on the cover - how indulgent!

  2. Where have you been Katren, we miss you!

  3. I'm hungry for more. please post!