It starts with slow cooker beef brisket with barbecue sauce. Cool the beef when done, slice, toss with bean sprouts and lettuce, drizzle in the satay dressing then garnish with toasted cashew nuts.
I’m into vegetable salad these days. After swearing them off for most of my life for being boring, I’ve finally found a formula that works for me: Add a generous amount of meat or seafood to the vegetables, combine with a kick-ass dressing and the salad is transformed into something that’s not just passably palatable but one that is truly delicious and satisfying.
Why does this recipe work? Think of it as barbecue over barbecue. The beef is cooked in American style barbecue sauce; the dressing is a Southeast Asian barbecue sauce.
The vegetables are a mix of East and West too. Lettuce is arguably the most common salad green in the West; bean sprout is one of the most popular salad vegetables in Asia.
Together, they’re just wonderful. Light crispness of the lettuce plus the moist crunchiness of the bean sprouts. For those of you who are controlling the portion of the food that you eat per meal, the amount of water that the bean sprouts contain is guaranteed to make you feel full before you’ve eaten a ton.
Beef and Bean Sprout Salad With Satay Dressing
- 300 to 400 grams cooked beef brisket (see notes after the recipe)
- 2 bunches lettuce (we like Romaine!)
- 3 to 4 cups fresh bean sprouts (see notes after the recipe)
- 1/4 cup chopped cashew nuts
Cut the beef into thin slices.
Rinse the lettuce and break up unto bite-size pieces. Pass through the salad spinner to remove as much water as possible.
Dump the bean sprouts in a large bowl and fill with water. Pick out bean skins that float and discard. Pour off the water. Rinse the sprouts a few times and drain. Pass through the salad spinner (don’t overdo this!) to remove surface water.
Toast the cashew nuts in an oil-free pan until lightly browned. Cool.
To make the dressing, start by thinning the peanut butter. Place in a bowl, add a quarter cup of hot water and mix until smooth.
Add the rest of the salad dressing ingredients to the peanut butter and mix well. Add more hot water, a tablespoon at a time, until the dressing is pourable. Note that I used a total of one-half cup hot water.
In a large mixing bowl, toss the beef, lettuce and bean sprouts.
Drizzle the dressing over the salad.
Sprinkle in the cashew nuts.
Serve the remaining dressing on the side.
You may, of course, cook the beef brisket with your own barbecue sauce. And, if you don’t own a slow cooker, you may cook it in the oven too.
About the bean sprouts… When you buy them, note that there are small ones and large ones. For salads, the long ones are preferable. They retain their shape and texture better.