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Special Sweet And Sour Beef

  • 5-6
Special Sweet And Sour Beef

This very up-market version of the take away classic is tempered with spices and herbs redolent of Thailand. Beef fillet with its lean meat and tender texture is perfect for this dish. If you have time, allow the beef to marinate overnight so the flavours have plenty of time to develop.


  • 750 gram piece fillet steak (see Cook’s Tips


  • 2 tblsp fish sauce
  • 2 tsp each minced garlic and ginger
  • 2 tblsp Thai-style sweet chilli sauce
  • 2 tblsp freshly chopped mint leaves

Vegetables for Stir Fry

  • 1 tblsp shredded ginger
  • 1 large red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 2-3 heads bok choy, halved
  • 250 grams mushrooms such as shiitake and or oyster
  • 125 grams snowpeas or green beans, sliced
  • 5-6 spring onions, trimmed and chopped


  • 4 tblsp lime (or use lemon juice)
  • 2 tblsp fish sauce
  • 1 tblsp grated palm sugar (or use brown sugar)
  • ¼ cup each freshly chopped coriander and mint


  1. In a resealable bag toss the marinade ingredients, fish sauce, garlic, ginger, chilli sauce and mint with the beef fillet. Seal and leave to marinate for 30 minutes or up to overnight if possible. Turn occasionally to coat the beef evenly. Remove from the fridge 30 minutes before cooking.
  2. Heat a dash oil in a heavy based frying pan and when very hot brown the well-drained fillet steak evenly on all sides. Transfer to a shallow roasting dish and cook at 200°C for about 20 minutes for rare or 30 minutes for well-done. Remove the fillet and rest for 10 minutes while preparing the stir fry vegetables.
  3. In a wok or deep frying pan heat a dash of oil and stir fry the shredded ginger, chilli, bok choy, mushrooms, snowpeas or beans and spring onions until the vegetables are crisp and tender.
  4. Thinly slice the beef fillet. Toss with warm stir-fried vegetables and dressing ingredients. Serve immediately.


  1. Mix together the lime juice, fish sauce, palm or brown sugar, coriander and mint. Mix well.

Cooks Tips

Use the centre cut of the fillet steak or alternatively use Scotch fillet and cook for 30 minutes for rare and 35-40 for medium. Cooking times are for medium - rare meat, though the thickness of the fillet will dictate the cooking time. The meat will feel quite springy when pushed with a clean finger for medium rare. Buying Beef fillet: When buying beef fillet it’s worth remembering that a fillet is usually divided into three sections. The thickest end is called the head or tête de filet there is the middle section coêur de filet and finally the tail called the fillet mignon. The middle section is the easiest piece to buy for this recipe as it cooks quickly and is usually an ideal amount to serve 6. If you have bought the head or thickest section, allow an extra 10 minutes cooking time as it is much thicker.

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