It’s June 1st and I am posting a picnic recipe. But is it picnic weather? Nope, it most definitely is not! The rain is currently thundering loudly on the kitchen skylights and it is actually cold in the house. This is why I shoot down my daughter’s ‘picnic party’ ideas every year – her birthday falls on June 6th and we have had rain at least 5 out of her 9 years (don’t get me started about how crazy it feels to have a daughter who is turning 10. Practically a teenager!). British weather likes to keep you on your toes – whenever I plan any outdoor activity like a BBQ or picnic I like to have contingency plans in place. It reminds me of the Gilmore Girls episode where they visit Harvard with the grandparents. Rory is instructed to pack both a swimsuit and a raincoat – ‘prepare for every eventuality’ should be your motto in the face of British summertime.
So anyway back to this recipe which was commissioned by Iceland as part of their #PowerOfFrozen campaign. I have been consistently impressed with the quality and variety of frozen produce available at Iceland, and they have a very big range of BBQ products (good weather guarantee sadly not included). This Thai Beef Salad uses their Gaucho Steakhouse Beef Sirloin Steak which can be cooked quickly on a griddle or the BBQ. Add a zesty Thai sauce, spiralized courgette (zoodles), mango, avocado and fresh spinach and layer everything in a large jar for a portable recipe that tastes equally amazing al fresco or at your office desk. Now here’s hoping for some summer sunshine!
Thai Beef Salad in a Jar
Serves 2 | see notes for single serving
For the marinade
2 tbsp reduced salt soy sauce
1 tbsp sunflower oil
1 tbsp dark brown sugar or 2 tbsp palm sugar
1cm | 1/2 inch fresh ginger, finely grated
1 large garlic clove, minced
1 small shallot, chopped very finely
1/2 red chilli, deseeded and chopped finely
handful fresh coriander leaves, roughly chopped
handful fresh mint leaves, roughly chopped
Juice of 1 small lime (or more, to taste)
For the salad
2 medium sirloin steaks
1 ripe avocado, diced into cubes and tossed with 1 tsp lime juice
1 small mango, peeled and cut into cubes
1 small courgette (zucchini) spiralised into noodles
large handful baby spinach
a little rapeseed (canola) oil
salt and freshly ground pepper
2. Mix all the ingredients for the marinade in a small bowl then add to a large clean jar.
3. Add the sliced beef and then layer the spiralized courgette (zoodles), mango, avocado and finally the spinach.
4. When you are ready to serve, invert the jar so that the marinade coats the ingredients. Pour into a large bowl and serve immediately.
Notes: you can split this recipe into two jars to make individual servings. One small steak per person is enough for a single serving. You might want to use half each of avocado and mango. Vary the salad by adding carrot or sliced peppers. Make it more substantial by serving over rice.