Vietnamese beef curry

    1 hour

    This mild curry is simple and delicious. Beef mince is simmered with lettuce, in a cumin-spiced tomato sauce. Serve over freshly cooked rice.

    22 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 190g uncooked long grain white rice
    • 475ml water
    • 5 teaspoons caster sugar
    • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
    • 4 tablespoons fish sauce
    • 75ml water
    • 1 1/2 tablespoons chilli sauce
    • 1 lemon, juiced
    • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
    • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    • 450g minced beef
    • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
    • 2 (400g) tins chopped tomatoes
    • 110g lettuce leaves, torn into 1.25cm wide strips

    Prep:15min  ›  Cook:45min  ›  Ready in:1hr 

    1. In a pot, bring the rice and water to the boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 25 minutes.
    2. In a bowl, mash together the sugar and 1 clove garlic with a pestle. Mix in the fish sauce, water, chilli sauce and lemon juice.
    3. 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.
    4. Toss the lettuce into the beef mixture. Serve at once over the cooked rice with the remaining fish sauce mixture on the side.

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    Reviews in English (22)


    This was really delicious. It's lovely to have a recipe for mince that's a bit different. I added all the fish sauce mixture rather than saved any for a dipping sauce and cooked for 40 mins. Added some courgette as I have a glut to get rid of! Will definitely be making again  -  14 Oct 2013


    I used chow mein noodles instead of rice, ¼ 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.  -  04 Jan 2008  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)


    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!  -  20 Dec 2005  (Review from Allrecipes US | Canada)