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Thai Beef Salad ~ Larb

Thai Beef Salad
Mindy Fox

Prep 45 mins
Total 45 mins
4 servings
319 kcal


  • 1 1/2 teaspoons whole coriander seeds (optional)
  • 1/2 pound green beans trimmed
  • 9 ounces green cabbage cored and very thinly shredded (4 cups)
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped cilantro
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
  • 1 garlic clove finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound lean ground beef (or substitute pork or chicken)
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 small red onion very thinly sliced
  • 1/3 cup very thinly sliced scallions white and green parts
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped salted, roasted cashews
  • 2 tablespoons coarsely chopped basil plus whole leaves for garnish
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped mint
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 medium serrano chile very thinly sliced and, if desired, seeded


  • If using coriander seeds, place them in a dry skillet over medium-low heat and toast them, shaking the skillet back and forth, until quite fragrant, about 6 minutes. Transfer the seeds to a plate to cool. Dump the seeds into a mini food processor or spice grinder and coarsely grind them, or crush them with the flat side of a chef’s knife. Transfer the pulverized seeds to a small bowl.
  • Bring a small saucepan of salted water to a boil. Dump in the green beans and cook for 1 minute. Drain and run under cold water to cool. Pat the beans dry, then very thinly slice the beans crosswise into small rounds (or, for a somewhat fancier schmancier presentation, halve the beans lengthwise into long slivers), and transfer the beans to a large bowl. Add the cabbage and 1 tablespoon cilantro and toss to combine.
  • In a small bowl, whisk together the fish sauce, 2 tablespoons lime juice, garlic, and sugar.
  • In a large skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon oil. Add the beef (or pork or chicken) and 1/4 teaspoon salt and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon and breaking up the chunks of meat until it's cooked through, about 4 minutes. Remove the skillet from the heat and add the remaining 2 tablespoons cilantro, the fish sauce mixture, the onion, scallions, cashews, basil, mint, cayenne, and half the sliced chile and stir to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.
  • To the cabbage mixture, add the remaining tablespoon lime juice, the remaining tablespoon oil, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Toss to combine.
  • Divide the cabbage mixture among 4 plates and top with the meat mixture. Sprinkle with the basil leaves and the remaining chile and coriander seeds, if using. Instruct guests to eat the Thai beef salad with their hands. (Although you could offer a fork and it wouldn't be the worst thing in the world.)