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Vietnamese Crispy Brisket Salad

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Vietnamese Crispy Brisket Salad

Recipe Notes

  • Yield: Serves 4

Ingredients

For the Dressing

  • 1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
  • 2 tablespoons sugar, or to taste
  • 5 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice, plus extra as needed
  • 2 tablespoons Asian fish sauce, plus extra as needed
  • 2 tablespoons cold water
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the Salad

  • 1 ½ cups vegetable oil (optional)
  • ½ pound barbecued brisket, torn into slender shreds
  • 1 cup diced fresh pineapple
  • ½ hothouse cucumber, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch slices
  • 2 serrano chiles (preferably red—or to taste), stemmed and thinly sliced crosswise
  • 2 scallions, trimmed, white and green parts sliced on a sharp diagonal
  • 2 cups stemmed fresh herbs, mixed, including cilantro, Thai or conventional basil, and fresh peppermint or spearmint (at least two)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped, dry-roasted peanuts, salted or unsalted

Recipe Steps

1: Place the garlic and 1 teaspoon of the sugar in a small mixing bowl and mash to a paste with the back of a spoon. Add the remaining sugar, lime juice, fish sauce, cold water, and pepper and whisk until the sugar is dissolved. Correct the seasoning, adding lime juice, fish sauce, or sugar to taste: The dressing should be highly seasoned. The dressing can be made up to 1 hour ahead.

2: Just before serving, line a plate with paper towels. Clip a deep-fry thermometer to the side of a saucepan so that the tip does not touch the bottom of the pan; add the oil and start frying when the temperature reaches 375°F. Deep-fry the shredded brisket until sizzling and crisp, 2 minutes. Work in batches as needed so as not to overcrowd the pan. Transfer the brisket with a wire skimmer or slotted spoon to the prepared plate to drain.

3: Pour the dressing into a large serving bowl. Stir in the fried brisket shreds. Add the pineapple, cucumber, chiles, scallions, and herbs. Toss to mix. Sprinkle with the peanuts and serve.

Recipe Tips

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Steven Raichlen’s Project Fire is a production of Maryland Public Television, Barbacoa, Inc., and Resolution Pictures. © 2019 Barbacoa, Inc. Photos by Chris Bierlein.


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