I’m a copycat but it’s worth it for this recipe.
I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday season. Christmas came and went so fast and the New Year is here, and everyone is wanting to cut calories and food intake.
What are your New Year’s resolutions? Well when it comes to food I would like to do one vegetarian meal a week, fish at least 2 times a week (baked or pan fried), a main dish salad at least once a week, and then try and fill in the other days with healthier meals made with chicken and some pork. I think having salad is a perfect start to the new year.
What is it about a salad that is so refreshing even if it is loaded with tons of ingredients? I don’t know but I think most people feel like they are watching their calories when eating salad and that’s not always true.
A couple of years ago I gave up buying all those creamy prepared salad dressings and now whip up any type of vinaigrette at a moments notice. As long as you have olive oil, vinegar (some balsamic also), some Dijon mustard or other types of mustard and seasoning, you can whip up a dressing almost as quick as you can grab for that high fat store bought dressing that might still be in your refrigerator.
I don’t really think about the calories when I’m making a salad at home. I’m just thinking I can make one thing and not doing a protein, sides, etc., etc. Even though this salad has a long list of ingredients, you can prep everything early in the day and then just throw it together for your evening meal. For a salad with few ingredients and big taste, I posted the Bitter Green Salad with Yuzu dressing from our Hawaiian feast a few weeks ago.
My sister has always loved Houston’s Restaurant Evil Jungle Thai Salad. I have yet to taste it but I take her word that it is a delicious salad and she says it’s her most favorite restaurant salad.
So I started googling their recipe and came up with several copycat recipes. I’m sticking with the dressing recipe but added more garlic (or course) and for the salad, I omitted the noodles just because I didn’t think I would like noodles in a salad. I also added oranges instead of mango (I eat enough mango as it is), added the fresh ginger, jalapenos, the avocado and the savoy cabbage along with a mixture of lettuce. I browned my sesame seeds (not in their recipe) and the peanuts in a dry skillet which really adds a nice toasty taste to the salad. I think I changed enough ingredients in this salad to call it my own but I would have to say the Evil Thai Steak Salad from Houston’s Restaurant was definitely my inspiration.
While visiting in Chicago before Christmas, we made this one night at our son and daughter-in-law’s house, and we all enjoyed it along with some fresh crusty French bread and some Cambozola cheese.
So without further adieu (hey, my first French word! Need to pick up a few more before going to France in March)…..
All ingredients ready to go. I used Mandarin oranges and some fresh oranges also.
Thai Steak Salad
Dressing: (for two salads)
3 Tbsp. lime juice
1 Tbsp. fish sauce
1 Tbsp. water
1 clove garlic, minced
1 1/2 tsp. Sriracha sauce (or chile paste)
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1/2 tsp. sesame oil
2 Tbsp. canola or grape-seed oil
1/2 lbs. rib-eye steak (enough for two)
1/2 avocado, sliced for garnish
1 1/2 c. savoy cabbage, sliced very thin
mixed lettuce (curly or red leaf, spinach, mescaline
1 small julienned carrot
1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger
1 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
1/3 c. seeded, diced cucumber
1-2 oranges, peeled and sectioned or filleted
1/3 c. diced tomato
1/3 c. thinly sliced red onion
2 Tbsp. toasted chopped peanuts
1 thinly sliced seed jalapeno pepper
1/2 c. combination of cilantro, mint and Thai basil
To prepare the dressing, whisk all ingredients together and set aside. To make the salad, season the rib-eye with salt and pepper and sear in a hot skillet for 2-3 minutes per side or pop on the gas grill for the desired doneness. Let the meat rest for a few minutes before slicing thin on the diagonal.
Toast the peanuts and sesame seeds in a dry skillet or herb basket (or sieve) until nice and brown, set aside.
Mix all the remaining salad ingredients except for the peanuts and sesame seeds in a large bowl. Drizzle the dressing until well coated. Divide the salad between two plates, top with sliced beef, sprinkle with peanuts and pass more dressing.
*Note: I would make extra dressing to pass in case someone wants more. I’m doing the salad for 6 of us and will probably 4-5 times the dressing recipe.