Vietnamese Lemon Grass Beef and Vermicelli Noodle Dish (Bun Bo Xao)

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Bun Bo Xao is a popular Vietnamese dish and perfect introduction if you are a newbie to their cuisine. This dish is a stir-fry of enjoyably fragrant marinated beef paired with vegetables and room temperature rice noodles, and dressed with their classic dipping sauce topped with chopped-roasted peanuts. The lemon grass adds subtle citrus flavor to the dish, giving you a clean and refreshing flavors that helps in training your palate to crave less sugar and salt.
  • 4 tablespoonsBrown Sugar
  • 3 tablespoonsRice Vinegar
  • 3 tablespoonsLime Juice
  • ¼ cupWater
  • 3 tablespoonsThai Fish Sauce
  • 2 clovesGarlic  minced
  • 1 tablespoonFresh Ginger  grated
  • 1 mediumRed Chili  deseeded and chopped
  • 120 gramsVermicelli Noodles  uncooked
  • 250 gramsBeef Sirloin  cut into 1/4-inch thick slices
  • 2 tablespoonsThai Fish Sauce
  • 1 tablespoonBrown Sugar
  • 3 clovesGarlic  minced
  • 3 tablespoonsLemongrass  finely chopped (tender centers only)
  • 1 tablespoonFresh Ginger  grated
  • 1 headIceberg Lettuce  rinsed and tender centerseparated
  • 2 tablespoonsCanola Oil
  • 2 tablespoonsScallions  sliced thinly
  • 1 mediumCarrots  cut into julienne
  • 1 mediumCucumber  cut into julienne
  • 3 tablespoonsCilantro  chopped coarsely
  • 3 tablespoonsRoasted Peanuts  crushed
  • 2 Red Chili  sliced thinly (optional)
  • 3 tablespoonsPeanuts  roasted and crushed
  • 2 Red Chili  sliced thinly (optional)
  1. Using a small bowl, combine sugar, rice vinegar, water and lime juice and stir until well combined. Add fish sauce, garlic, red chili and ginger, and stir well. Set aside.
  2. Place noodles in a big bowl and pour hot water. When the noodles are al dente, drain and wash with cold water. When the noodles have cooled down, add some canola oil to prevent from sticking.
  3. Meanwhile, combine beef, fish sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, and lemon grass in a bowl, massage thoroughly seasoning into beef and let sit for 30 minutes.
  4. Line 2 individual large-wide soup bowls with a few lettuce leaves and top with cooked noodles.
  5. Heat oil in a stir-fry pan over high heat. When pan is nearly smoking, add beef and quickly stir-fry until lightly browned and just cooked; about 2 minutes.
  6. Top noodles with cooked beef, scallions, carrots, and cucumber. Sprinkle with red chili, cilantro and crushed peanuts. Drizzle generously with dipping sauce.
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