Vietnamese Steak Salad with Mint

I still remember the first time I ate Vietnamese food, it completely blew my mind. There was a flavour explosion in my mouth and I wondered why I had never eaten this before. Totally, obsessed I make it a point to eat at every Vietnamese restaurant in the city. Over the years I have eaten lots of variations of this salad and finally attempted to make it at home. This recipe uses fish sauce which on its own is really stinky and if you have never used it before in your cooking it might shock you a little, but I promise it makes the most delicious dressing for this salad. Fresh herbs bring a nice zing and crunch to this. 


  • 1 lb/ 0.75 kg skirt steak 
  • 2 tbsp olive/veg oil 
  • salt & pepper to season steak 
  • 1 head romaine lettuce
  • 1 bunch mint leaves 
  • 1 bunch cilantro leaves (optional)
  • 1 bunch Thai basil (optional) 
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced 
  • 2 tbsp rice, toasted 
  • for sauce 
  • 2 tbsp fish sauce 
  • 3 tbsp lime juice 
  • 2 garlic cloves, sliced 
  • 1 tsp chilli flakes 
  • 2 tbsp brown sugar 
  • 2 tbsp water 


  1. Bring steak to room temperature and pat dry with a paper towel. Season on both sides with salt and pepper. 
  2. Heat a skillet with oil, add steak and cook on each side for 3 min, for medium-rare in the centre. Let the steak rest for 10 mins before slicing on against the grain. 
  3. For sauce – mix all the ingredients in a bowl and mix till the sugar has melted 
  4. Wash and have your herbs and lettuce ready 
  5. To assemble – lay salad leaves on a platter and add the steak and onions. 
  6. Drizzle generously with dressing and sprinkle toasted rice over it.
  7. Enjoy cold. 

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