Grilled Beef with Lemongrass-Thịt Bò Nướng Xả

Vietnamese food

    The lemongrass aroma from the grill is simply irresistible. Ricky, my boyfriend loves the flavor so much that he poured all the leftover marinade on the beef when we had a picnic at Crater Lake last summer.  He said this was going to make everyone came here wanted to eat.
     Lemongrass is the main flavor. It is sold fresh or frozen at Oriental store.  The beef can be cooked on the grill with skewers or in a grill basket, on a griddle, and even in a pan too.  I used “Three Crabs” fish sauce in the recipe but any fish sauce can be used.  Each flank steak weights slightly different, so adjust the fish sauce and sugar amounts accordingly.  Flank steak (also know a London broil) is flavorful but any tender cut can be used. When flank steak is sliced thinly against the grain, you do not have to worry about overcook.
     They can be served as an appetizer,  or with vermicelli,  or bread, or rice paper, or rice. Today we eat them with rice, rau sống ̣(mixed green and herbs) and nước mắm chắm (sweet and sour fish sauce)

Serve 4-6 as main dish, or 8 as an appetizer

1 flank beef  (weight varies from 1.5-2 lb), I got one 30 oz (1lb&14 oz) for this recipe.
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
2 medium Asian shallot, peeled, minced
2 stalks of lemongrass, prepared as previous Lemongrass post
3 Tbs fish sauce
3 Tbs sugar or packed brown sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper
2 Tbs vegetable oil
Metal or Bamboo skewers,( about 30-32 skewers/10 in. long, soaked in water for 30 minutes before using)
Cooking rice, thinly slice cucumber, tomato, lettuce, herb to serve
1/4 cup roasted peanut, coarsely crushed
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion
2 Tbs vegetable oil
Cooked rice to serve
Dipping sauce
1 garlic clove, finely minced
1 small hot red chili, finely minced
1 Tbs sugar
1 Tbs fish sauce
1 Tbs water
Lime juice to taste, about 1-2 Tbs

  1. Trim any visible fat, cut into halves lengthwise. Then thinly slice against the grain on a slight angle into 1/8-1/4 in. thick slices.  This is a tough cut so the thinner the better. Put lemongrass, shallot, garlic, and salt in a mortar and pound into a fine paste or use a blender or food processor if you want too.
  2. Transfer the paste to a large bowl, add sugar, fish sauce, ground black pepper and beef.  Mix well, cover and marinate at least 1 hours over a counter or overnight in the fridge.  Take the meat out of the fridge 1 hour before grilling. Soak skewers. Thread beef onto skewers.
  3. Heat 2 Tbs oil in a small sauce pan.  When the oil is shimmering, remove from heat and add green onion slowly to prevent over foaming. Mix all ingredients of dipping sauce together in a small bowl. Stir well, and add lime juice, taste and set aside.
  4. Preheat the grill to medium heat, lightly oil the grate. Grill skewers in batches, turn over once with a tong until beef is medium about 4 minutes total or grill one side until brown about 3 minutes, turn and grill until brown  about 3 more minutes. The skewers was covered during grilling on my portable gas grill.  Put all skewers in a platter, sprinkle green onion oil and crushed peanut atop.
  5. Serve with rice, thinly sliced cucumber, tomato and mix of herbs and lettuce, and dipping sauce. 


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