Thai Beef with Papaya and Rice

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• 2 thick-cut lean sirloin steaks
• 1 1/4 cups (300 ml) jasmine rice
• 5 cups (1.25 l) chicken stock
• 4 kaffir lime leaves, crushed
• 2 tsp (10 ml) canola oil
• 2 firm, ripe papayas, peeled, seeded and sliced
• 1/2 small cucumber, halved lengthwise, seeded and sliced crosswise
• 20 mint leaves, shredded
• 1/4 cup (50 ml) chopped cilantro
• 1 red onion, thinly sliced
• 1 romaine lettuce, leaves separated

Thai lime dressing:

• 1 1/2 tbsp (20 ml) canola oil
• 1 1/2 tbsp (20 ml) fish sauce
• 1 1/2 tbsp (20 ml) soy sauce
• 1 tbsp (15 ml) honey
• grated zest, juice of 1 lime
• 1 chili pepper, seeded and finely chopped
• 2 garlic cloves, crushed

To serve:
Roughly chopped unsalted roasted peanuts

1. For dressing, mix ingredients together in small bowl. Spoon 1/4 cup (50 ml) dressing over the steaks and marinate for 20 minutes. Reserve remaining dressing.

2. Put rice in pot with stock and lime leaves. Bring to boil, then cover and sim­mer 10 minutes, or according to package instructions.

3. Pat steaks dry with paper towels. Heat cast-iron frying pan over high heat. Brush with oil, then add steaks and cook for 2 1/2 minutes per side for rare, longer for medium or well-done. Remove steaks from pan and let rest.

4. Place papayas, cucumber, mint, coriander and red onion in bowl. Add all but 1 1/2 tbsp (20 ml) remaining dressing; toss gently to mix.

5. Drain rice well and divide among four plates. Arrange lettuce leaves on plates and top with papaya salad. Slice beef into strips, arrange on top of salad and spoon remaining dressing over top. Sprinkle with peanuts, then serve at room temperature.

Serves 4

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