Asian-style beef & watercress salad

Preparation: 15 mins      Cooking: 5 mins      Serves: 4 as a starter or 2 as a main meal


  • 85g watercress

  • ½ a small red onion, thinly sliced

  • 1 plum tomato, thinly sliced

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil

  • 2 cloves garlic, finely diced

  • 300g sirloin steak, cut into strips

  • Salt and pepper

For the nuoc cham dressing (makes about 250ml):

  • Juice of 2 limes

  • 3 tbsp fish sauce

  • 1 garlic clove, crushed and very finely chopped

  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped

  • 2 tbsp palm sugar or dark brown soft sugar

  • 100ml warm water

  • 1 tbsp chopped coriander


First make the dressing: Stir together warm water and sugar until completely dissolved.

Combine with all other dressing ingredients in a bowl, season to taste and set aside.

Add oil to a frying pan and heat on high until oil is smoking.

Add the beef and stir fry for one minute, adding salt and pepper to taste. Beef should be browned on the outside but remain pink in the centre.

Remove beef and allow pan to cool slightly, then add chopped garlic. Stir-fry until fragrant.

In a bowl, combine watercress, red onion, tomato, beef and garlic. Toss with the dressing and mix well, saving the rest of the dressing for later. Serve immediately.

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