Since his fiancée Deana Saukam's father has diabetes, Top Chef Season 9 winner Paul Qui came up with this sugarless version of nuoc cham, the classic Vietnamese dipping sauce. Coconut water replaces the sugar; shallot, garlic and jalapeño add bold flavor.
Slideshow:Great Salads with Meat
nuoc cham dressing
1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce, preferably Red Boat
1/4 cup coconut water
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
1 1/2 teaspoons coconut vinegar or cider vinegar
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1 garlic clove, sliced
1/2 jalapeño, minced with seeds
One 12-ounce, trimmed, boneless rib eye steak, cut 1 inch thick
1 teaspoon canola oil
Freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 garlic clove
1 thyme sprig
1 tablespoon Maggi liquid seasoning (a vegetable-based seasoning sauce)
5 ounces baby kale
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1 small Japanese cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced
1 tomato, cut into wedges
How to Make It
Step 1 make the nuoc cham dressing
Combine all of the ingredients in a medium bowl and let stand for 15 minutes.
Step 2 meanwhile, make the salad
Rub the steak all over with the oil and season with salt and pepper. Heat a small cast-iron skillet until very hot. Add the steak and cook over moderately high heat for 2 minutes, until browned and crusty. Add the butter, garlic and thyme to the skillet and spoon the melted butter over the steak. Flip the steak and cook for 2 minutes longer, spooning the butter on top. Add the Maggi seasoning, cover and let stand off the heat for 2 minutes. Transfer the steak to a paper towel–lined work surface, cover loosely with foil and let rest for 5 minutes.
Step 3 meanwhile, make the salad
Thinly slice the steak and place in a large serving bowl. Add the baby kale, sliced onion, cucumber, tomato and nuoc cham dressing, toss the salad well and serve.
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