Satay Beef, Glass Noodles and Lettuce Rolls

, from Issue #21. September, 2015
Photography by Aaron McLean.
Satay Beef, Glass Noodles and Lettuce Rolls

Serves: 4


50 grams glass or vermicelli noodles

2 tablespoons peanut oil
600 grams beef mince*
1 red onion, very thinly sliced
1⁄4 cup sweet chilli sauce
1⁄4 cup kecap manis
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1⁄4 cup chopped, roasted peanuts

Cucumber salad
1⁄4 cup caster sugar
1⁄4 cup water
3 tablespoons lime juice
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon sweet chilli sauce
1/3 cup finely diced carrot
1 cup finely diced telegraph cucumber

To serve
iceberg lettuce leaves
1⁄2 cup coriander
extra roasted peanuts


Noodles: Drop the noodles into a saucepan of boiling water and leave for 10 minutes. Drain well and toss with a little sesame oil to prevent them sticking. Cut into shorter lengths with kitchen scissors to make them easier to serve. Set aside.

Cucumber salad: Put the sugar and water in a small saucepan and bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Tip into a bowl and stir in the remaining ingredients.

Beef: Heat the peanut oil in a wok or large sauté pan until hot. Add the beef and onions and cook over a high heat, breaking up the beef with the back of a spoon and cook until the onion is soft and the meat cooked. Mince can sometimes release a lot of water during cooking.Keep the heat high and it will evaporate during the cooking process. Add the remaining ingredients and continue to cook, stirring constantly until the sauce is reduced and glossy and the meat is caramelized. This can easily take 20 minutes. Season with sea salt if needed. Tip into a serving dish.

To serve: Place a small pile of noodles in each lettuce leaf and top with the satay beef, cucumber salad and coriander.

* It is important to use mince with a reasonable fat content for this dish. Lean mince will result in a dry, tasteless dish.