cucumber salad

Tart & Spicy Saigon Beef Cucumber Salad

A satisfying salad with beautifully balanced Asian flavors. If you don’t like ‘spicy’ foods, you can always omit the red pepper flakes and Sriracha. Also, this dish does well on its own without the veggie beef crumble addition if you want to skip that step.

Ingredients $30.00 (6 Servings)

  • Lime Juice Fresh preferable 1/4 unit
  • Brown Sugar 3 tbsps
  • Coconut Milk 1/3 cup
  • Lime Peel Finely grated 1 tbsp
  • Sriacha sauce (or other Asian hot chile sauce) 2 tbsps
  • Mirin (Japanese sweet rice wine) 2 tbsps
  • Dried hot red pepper flakes 1/2 tsp
  • Rice vinegar 1/2 cup
  • Sesame oil 3 tbsps
  • Ginger Finely grated 1 tsp
  • Veggie Crumbles (unseasoned) 12 ozs
  • Cucumbers Persian or Japanese preferable 2 units
  • Green Cabbage Chopped 1/2 unit
  • Red Cabbage Chopped 1/2 unit
  • Red Bell Pepper Cut into matchstick-size strips 1 unit
  • Mint Diced 1 unit
  • Cilantro Diced 1 unit
  • Shallot Chopped 1 tbsp
  • Mirin 1/2 cup
  • Salt 1/2 tsp
  • Pepper 1/2 tsp

For Chile Garlic Dressing:

Chili Sauce

Adding red pepper flakes to sauce

  1. Whisk together ginger, lime juice, lime zest, garlic, red pepper flakes, rice vinegar, fish sauce, 2 tbsp. mirin, 1 tbsp. sesame oil, 1 tbsp. Sriracha sauce in small bowl and boil over moderate heat 5 minutes.
  2. Stir in sugar and simmer until thickened and reduced to about 1/3 cup, about 5 minutes.
  3. Cool to room temperature while preparing salad.

For Salad:



  1. Peel one cucumber; cut in half lengthwise and scoop out seeds with small spoon. Cut into 1/4-inch cubes. Cut off ends from remaining cucumber and cut in half lengthwise. Cut halves crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices (potato slicer could come in handy here).
  2. Combine red & green cabbage, bell pepper, cilantro, and mint in large bowl.
  3. Pat cucumber pieces dry and add to salad. Toss with dressing.

NOTE: great additions to this salad could include roasted sesame seeds, salted peanuts, carrot, or green onions. I just didn’t happen to have them available this time.

For Beef:

asian sauces

Sauces & Oils available at most asian markets or ethnic food aisle

  1. Sprinkle veggie crumbles with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tbsp. sesame oil in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté crumbles, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes.
  2. Stir in shallot, 1 tbsp. Sriracha sauce, and 1/2 cup mirin and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes.
  3. Stir in coconut milk and simmer, uncovered, until sauce is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes.

To Serve:

Allow veggie crumble beef to cool, stir into salad mixture and serve in bowls.

Paul Trusik

35 y/o web guru vegan enthusiast encouraging meat/dairy-free habits. Since college, reaping health benefits of clean eating. Diet is a lifestyle, not a fad.

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