CHILE BEEF WITH FRAGRANT HERBSFor sides I served coconut jasmine rice, which is just rice cooked in coconut milk instead of water. I use Trader Joe's lite coconut milk for this (for a curry I wouldn't use the lite version: too watery).
1 lb. tender lean beef, sliced thinly across the grain (I like flank steak)
2 tablespoons canola oil
2 tablespoons fish sauce
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 tablespoons palm sugar (regular sugar will do)
1/2 cup shallot, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1/2 cup fresh mint leaves
1 cup fresh basil leaves
Combine fish sauce, soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sugar. Stir to dissolve the sugar and set aside.
Heat wok over high heat. When pan is hot, swirl to coat with oil and add shallot. Stir fry for about a minute. Add garlic and stir fry for about 30 seconds. Add beef and stir fry until just barely done.
Add sauce and leaves, cooking until leaves are just wilted.
And where is the chile? Right here!
I use this product, Thai chile sauce, instead of fresh chiles so I can better control the heat. Since Sophie is sensitive to heat, I portion off her serving and then add this to the rest. And since Husband likes food hotter than I, I put some on the table for him to add to his plate.
We also had steamed seasoned broccoli. To save washing a pan and season the broccoli, dish the chile beef into a serving dish and add about a cup of water to the wok—don't wipe it out. When the water is boiling, add the broccoli and cover. Cook until done. Season with a bit of soy sauce or Vietnamese table sauce. Here's the recipe for the latter.
VIETNAMESE TABLE SAUCEAnd it wouldn't be a dinner at the Fig house if we didn't end with this:
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/4 cup fish sauce
1/4 cup water
2 teaspoons rice or cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
one clove of garlic, minced
Combine and stir to dissolve sugar. This will keep in the refrigerator for several days and is just the thing to perk up any Asian leftovers.
And cleanup is so easy! Hot water comes right out of the tap—presto! No need to heat on camp stove! Do we live in luxury or what? Not that a view of the Tetons from my camp kitchen wasn't a form of luxury.