This has to be one of my absolute favourite salads, bringing back memories of a pub on the outskirts on London I used to live near that specialised in Thai food. I’d find an excuse two or three times a week to visit, sitting in the garden in the summer, but always drinking a cold Thai beer whilst I nibbled on the most incredible appetisers. And just when I thought life couldn’t get any better (ok, I was easily pleased at that age), I tried something called ‘Weeping Tiger‘ and never looked back. My only regret is that I didn’t try it sooner.
I imagine the name is reference to the heat, served up not only through the chilli kick but also because of the zing of the lime juice. All the ingredients for the dressing work together to create the 4 sensations essential to any Thai cuisine: salty, sour, sweet and hot.
This is my take on this incredibly simple dish and feel free to improvise with the salad part by adding anything else you’d like to it. I’ve got a thing about raw enoki mushrooms at the moment, though not that much of a thing that I had any for this dish, of course. Next time…
- 2 sirloin or rump steaks
- handful of dried egg noodles
- handful of bean sprouts
- 1 finely shredded carrot
- 1 small chopped red chilli
- 1/4 cucumber, deseeded, cut into thin strips
- herb salad leaves, anything you like but I love a few coriander leaves
- 2 TBSP sesame oil
- 2 TBSP chopped roasted cashews
For the ‘Weeping Tiger’ dressing:
- 1 small shallot, very finely chopped
- 3 TBSP lime juice
- 2 TBSP fish sauce
- 2 TBSP fresh, chopped coriander
- pinch of sugar
- large pinch of roasted chilli powder
- Lightly oil the steak both sides; get a dry griddle pan ferociously hot and add the steak. Don’t touch it for 3 minutes, then flip it over and cook for 3 minutes on the other side. Take it out and leave to rest for 5 mins, long enough to make the dressing and salad
- Combine all the dressing ingredients together in a bowl and stir
- Put noodles in another bowl and add boiling water to cover; stir, leave for 3 minutes, drain and rinse under cold water before drying on kitchen paper.
- In a bowl, add the noodles, beansprouts, chopped red chilli, leaves, carrot and drizzle with the sesame oil; mix well and pile onto the centre of a plate, topping with the toasted cashews.
- Thinly slice the steak on the diagonal and arrange on the plate
- Drizzle the dressing over the beef and tuck in
This really is one of the most refreshing salads you’ll eat. It’s zingy, spicy, fresh and incredibly tasty and perfect for these warm summer afternoons – give it a go!