Saturday, August 17, 2013

Beef, Green Peppercorns

From north to south, the cuisine of Vietnam changes drastically.  The north traditionally embraces the older style of simplicity and plentiful herbs.  Absent from many dishes would be the spicy Thai chili and sugar.  However, traveling south would bring change and influence from bordering countries.  In the Hanoi region, beef would be prepared in this manner but a couple of ingredients might be removed. Today we will include all of the outside influences and embrace change!  Thai chili, a good amount of green peppercorns, and the sweet and salty marinade help create a tangy style of beef which beautifully represents the Vietnamese cuisine that has been shaped throughout the past century.  France, China, Thailand, and Vietnam all contribute to this version of Steak au Poivre.  

Bo Xao Tieu Xanh- Garlic and Green Peppercorn Beef

1 ½ lb. sirloin cubed

1 tbsp water
3 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp sugar

1 tbsp oil
4 garlic cloves crushed
1 Thai chili
1 red onion diced
2 tbsp green peppercorns
2 tbsp unsalted butter
1/4 cup green onions sliced
black pepper

Mix the ingredients for the marinade and toss with the beef.  Allow this to rest for about an hour.  In a wok or large saute pan, heat up the oil until it shimmers.  Sear beef until it is browned on all sides and still rare.  Remove the beef from the pan and add the garlic, chili, and onions.  Caramelize very well and return the beef to the pan.  Mix well and add peppercorns.  Cooking quickly, toss to coat the meat and swirl in the butter.  When the butter is fully incorporated add the green onions, turn off heat, and check for salt and pepper.  Serve with rice and cilantro leaves.

Custom Plates by Gerald Haessig

In the mid-80s, one of my favorite bands was the Psychedelic Furs.  An influential band of the early British post-punk movement, the Furs were also featured in two hit films of the 80s- Valley Girl (which starred Nicolas Cage) and Pretty In Pink (starring Molly Ringwald).  Valley Girl used the track "Love My Way", and the band contributed the title song to Pretty In Pink (although the song was much older than the movie).  So today I have been jamming to some of those classic tunes including the previously mentioned and hits such as "President Gas", "Forever Now", "Ghost In You", and "Heaven."  

My tasty beverage was a wonderful Dark and Stormy!  I used Spiced Cruzan Rum, Reed's Ginger Beer and fresh lime juice.  Fantastic, though I am not sure if it paired well with the beef, it tasted great and packs a wallop!   

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