A delicious mild curry to serve with steamed or boiled rice that's relatively simple to prepare. The use of lettuce in cooked meals is also an interesting novelty for Western tastes used to having it only in salads and buffet dishes.

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Recipe Summary

prep:
15 mins
cook:
45 mins
total:
1 hr
Servings:
4
Yield:
4 servings
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Ingredients

4
Original recipe yields 4 servings
The ingredient list now reflects the servings specified
Ingredient Checklist

Directions

Instructions Checklist
  • In a pot, bring the rice and water to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer 25 minutes.

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  • In a bowl, mash together the sugar and 1 clove garlic with a pestle. Mix in the fish sauce, water, chile sauce, and lemon juice.

  • Heat the oil in a wok over high heat, and quickly saute the 3 cloves garlic. Mix the beef into the wok, season with cumin, and cook until evenly brown. Pour in the tomatoes and about 1/2 the fish sauce mixture. Reduce heat to low, and simmer 20 minutes, until thickened.

  • Toss the lettuce into the beef mixture. Serve at once over the cooked rice with the remaining fish sauce mixture on the side.

Nutrition Facts

529 calories; protein 26.3g 53% DV; carbohydrates 56.9g 18% DV; fat 21g 32% DV; cholesterol 69mg 23% DV; sodium 1481.1mg 59% DV. Full Nutrition

Reviews (21)

Read More Reviews

Most helpful positive review

Rating: 4 stars
01/05/2008
I used chow mein noodles instead of rice cup canned diced tomato/chile and a mixture inspired by these 3 recipes: Basic Curry Sauce Chinese Style Sesame Sauce & Teriyaki Sauce and Marinade. I used peanut oil ginger garlic turmeric curry powder chile sauce cilantro white sugar cornstarch rice vinegar soy sauce peanut sauce lemon juice and water. Just keep tasting and adding stuff until you like it. Lots of cornstarch added a bit at a time helps thicken the sauce without affecting taste. While I had the sauce going I cooked the ground beef in a separate pan then drained it and added to the sauce and continued simmering. Ground beef grease is nasty so I wasn't about to cook the raw beef in the sauce. I let the food cool for a minute to thicken added romaine lettuce and sprinkled on sesame seeds for texture. Overall this recipe was good. The cooking times are correct to get good results. I used chow mein noodles because I m tired of rice and they take literally 1 minute to cook. I tried this recipe because I needed to use up my ground beef but something like this should be made with thinly sliced steak or pork. Read More
(15)

Most helpful critical review

Rating: 3 stars
09/15/2005
The cumin must be a type-o as previously mentioned. I used cumin and it tastes more like taco salad. Might try it with curry powder next time. The kids still liked it. Read More
(9)
24 Ratings
  • 5 star values: 7
  • 4 star values: 7
  • 3 star values: 8
  • 2 star values: 1
  • 1 star values: 1
Rating: 4 stars
01/05/2008
I used chow mein noodles instead of rice cup canned diced tomato/chile and a mixture inspired by these 3 recipes: Basic Curry Sauce Chinese Style Sesame Sauce & Teriyaki Sauce and Marinade. I used peanut oil ginger garlic turmeric curry powder chile sauce cilantro white sugar cornstarch rice vinegar soy sauce peanut sauce lemon juice and water. Just keep tasting and adding stuff until you like it. Lots of cornstarch added a bit at a time helps thicken the sauce without affecting taste. While I had the sauce going I cooked the ground beef in a separate pan then drained it and added to the sauce and continued simmering. Ground beef grease is nasty so I wasn't about to cook the raw beef in the sauce. I let the food cool for a minute to thicken added romaine lettuce and sprinkled on sesame seeds for texture. Overall this recipe was good. The cooking times are correct to get good results. I used chow mein noodles because I m tired of rice and they take literally 1 minute to cook. I tried this recipe because I needed to use up my ground beef but something like this should be made with thinly sliced steak or pork. Read More
(15)
Rating: 5 stars
12/20/2005
This was great! I used my favorite curry blend 1/2 the tomatoes and a little extra lettuce. Oh and no chile sauce since I didn't have any. The garlic gave it a slight bite. My husband and kids who like slightly ethnic foods loved this over jasmine rice! Read More
(13)
Rating: 5 stars
12/03/2005
It was a spicy sweet dish that proved worthy of my dinner table. Read More
(11)
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Rating: 3 stars
09/15/2005
The cumin must be a type-o as previously mentioned. I used cumin and it tastes more like taco salad. Might try it with curry powder next time. The kids still liked it. Read More
(9)
Rating: 3 stars
06/30/2008
Definitely not Vietamese but pretty good anways and a good use of a pound of meat and a head of lettuce. I used curry powder instead of cumin as suggested by other reviewers. I almost omitted the lemon and I'm glad I didn't. Fish sauce's flavor needs to be covered up by any combination of foods available in my opinion and the fish sauce mixture turned out to be surprisingly tangy sweet and complex. Read More
(6)
Rating: 4 stars
12/10/2007
I don't know how Vietnamese this really is but it was tasty nonetheless. Would add some vegetables next time around. But with the fish sauce a Thai sweet chili sauce and some Sriracha (for punch) this was quite good. Read More
(6)
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Rating: 3 stars
01/28/2006
With so many great curry recipes out there this was just average. Read More
(6)
Rating: 4 stars
06/12/2009
This was good but best of all really easy. Read More
(5)
Rating: 4 stars
03/06/2008
Wouldn't consider this "Curry" by any means...more like a taco salad as some reviews have quoted but boy does it taste much better than regular taco seasoning! Read More
(5)