How good is Thai Basil? Thai basil is a type of basil native to Southeast Asia that has been cultivated to provide distinctive traits. Widely used throughout Southeast Asia, its flavour, described as anise- and licorice-like and slightly spicy, is more stable under high or extended cooking temperatures than that of sweet basil – making it the perfect addition to this Asian beef salad with mango.
I often find that it is hard to find Thai basil at the farmer’s market or at my local super market, but it is pretty happy growing in a pot by my back door.
And I’m sit addicted to trying to cram the last of this season’s mangos into every meal. I love that my local supermarket has some great mangos in their ‘ugly’ fruit section for just $1.50 each.
ASIAN BEEF SALAD WITH MANGO
400 grams of beef flank steak
1 tbsp sichuan pepper
1 tbsp chinese five spice
1 thumb size piece of ginger
1 small bunch of thai basil
1 small red chilli
250 grams rice noodles
1 small red onion
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp soy sauce
Bring the kettle to the boil. Place the beef in a shallow dish and brush with oil before rubbing all over with the sichuan pepper and chinese five spice. Set aside for 10 minutes to marinate.
Meanwhile, combine the lime zest and lime juice with the soy sauce and microplaned ginger.
Place the noodles in a heat proof bowl and cover with boiling water. Stand for 3 minutes before draining and refreshing. Cut into shorter lengths with kitchen scissors.
Prepare the mango, cucumber, red onion, basil leaves and chilli for the salad.
Heat the chargrill pan on high. Cook the beef for 1-2 minutes on each side. Remove from the pan and rest for 5 minutes.
Thinly slice the beef against the grain. Add the slices to the mango, cucumber, red onion, basil leaves, chilli and noodles. Add the dressing and toss gently to combine.
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