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Beef Satay with Chinese Spices and Cucumber Relish

Seattle may be the birthplace of designer coffee, but it is also a world leader in Pacific Rim cooking. The best place to sample it is the restaurant Wild Ginger, where a house specialty is satay, tiny skewers of grilled meat. My version marinates in soy sauce and five-spice powder and is served with Malaysian peanut sauce and a cool cucumber relish.

slideshow Affordable Meat Recipes

  • Servings: 4 to 6

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  • 1 1/2 pounds flank steak
  • 1/4 cup mirin
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Asian sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 quarter-size slices fresh ginger, finely chopped
  • 2 scallions, white part only, chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • Vegetable oil, for the grill
  • Cucumber Relish
  • Peanut Dipping Sauce


  1. Cut the flank steak across the grain into 1/4-inch-thick slices. Thread the meat onto 8-inch bamboo skewers and arrange the skewers side by side on a large platter.
  2. Combine the mirin, soy, sesame oil, honey, garlic, ginger, scallions, five-spice powder and pepper in a small bowl. Pour the marinade over the skewers and turn to coat. Let the beef marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes or refrigerate for up to 1 hour.
  3. Light a grill. Place the grate 6 to 8 inches from the heat source. Lightly brush the grate with oil. Arrange the skewers on the grate and grill over high heat, turning once, until sizzling and nicely browned all over, 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer the skewers to a large platter and serve hot with Cucumber Relish and Peanut Dipping Sauce.

Make Ahead

The marinade can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Contributed By Published June 2000

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