In Vietnamese culture, the family meal is always something holy. It is not only a place for reunion, but also a moment for connection, sharing, warmth that everyone saves for each other. Whoever travels away from home will miss his or her family meal, where Dad’s story or Mom’s smile remains. From this idea of reunion around the meal, five-star chef Ho Cong Quyet of Da Nang Hyatt brought a yellow paddy straw mound onto his dish. Rendering the aroma of lemon grass and the buttery fragrance of sweet yam, the dish serves as a catalyst for people to recount stories about their home villages and their neighbors, about the paddy fields in full flourish ready for harvest, or about the rows of sweet scented yam cultivated by the filial peasants. The dish of Beef Banked in Straw and Served with Purple Yam is not only delicious, eye-catching, and wholesome, but also a whole sweet story about Vietnam’s countryside.
STRAW-BANKED BEEF WITH PURPLE YAMPrint This
- INGREDIENTS FOR MARINATING THE BEEF
- 400g beef filet
- 100g breadcrumbs
- 10g minced garlic
- 1g garlic powder
- 6g sugar
- 10ml soy sauce
- 1g chili powder
- 1 chicken egg
- 10ml oyster sauce
- 470ml cooking oil
- INGREDIENTS FOR LEMONGRASS STRAW
- 100g lemon grass stalk
- 50g frying flour
- 5g curry powder
- 1g salt
- 50ml cooking oil
- INGREDIENT FOR THE SIDE DISH
- 500g purple yam (taro)
- or purple potato
Marinate the beef: Dice the beef into 1cm cubes, then marinate all in a bowl with 10ml of soy sauce, 10ml oyster sauce, 6g sugar, 10g minced garlic, 1g garlic powder, 1g chili powder, 20ml cooking oil. Stir well for thorough penetration of spices.
Make the lemon grass straw: Rinse well the lemon grass, cut into 10-cm chunks, then pound and tear up into thin strips. Mix 50g of frying flour with 5g of curry powder and 1g of salt in a bowl, blend well; put the thin strips of lemon grass in and toss well for thorough coating.
Fry the lemon-grass straw: Place a pan over the stove fire till hot, pour in 50ml cooking oil. When the oil comes to heat, fry the flour-coated lemon grass on high heat until browned and crispy. Take out and drain them clear from oil grease.
Fry the beef: Heat the pan, put in 450ml cooking oil and wait till heated. Add the egg to the marinated beef and toss well. Roll each cube of beef thoroughly in the breadcrumb; next fry each in the oil pan until browned; then take out. Repeat the process with all the remaining beef. Rinse well the yam or potato and bake them until cooked; peel off the rind and cut the yam into mouthsize morsels.
Place the lemon grass straw on a serving dish, lay the fried crispy beef on top, and serve with baked yam dipped in chili paste.
The fried beef is evenly browned and crispy, not dry nor rubbery; the flavor is aromatic and slightly spicy, not oil-soaked.
The lemon grass straw is curry-fragrant and crispy. The yam is cooked and has a nutty flavor.
Marinate the beef 10 minutes before frying to avoid the juice coming out.
Frequently take out the bread fond in the oil pan to reduce burned oil.
Cut lemongrass in 10cm lengths.
HO CONG QUYET Hyatt Regency Da Nang Resort & Spa (Da Nang City) Runner-up in the semifinal round of the Northern Regions of the Golden Spoon Awards 2013