Thai Steak Lettuce Cups with Spicy Green Beans & Sushi Rice

Thai Steak Lettuce Cups

with Spicy Green Beans & Sushi Rice

45 MIN
2 Servings
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From the Test Kitchen

These delicious lettuce cups are a spin on Thai “laab gai,” a popular salad featuring spicy ground meat and plenty of fresh herbs. Here, butter lettuce leaves offer just enough heft to hold a combination of juicy steak, sticky sushi rice, and green beans sautéed with a spicy bird’s eye chile. Garnishes of mint and cilantro top off our lettuce cups with layers of cooling, aromatic flavor.

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  • Nutrition
    PER SERVING
  • Calories
    630 Cals (est.)
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fresh
ingredients
time-saving
tips & techniques
Prepare the ingredients:
1 Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Cut off and discard the stem ends of the green beans; halve crosswise. Peel and roughly chop the garlic. Quarter the lime. Cut off and discard the root end of the lettuce; carefully separate the leaves. Pick the cilantro and mint leaves off the stems; discard the stems. Cut off and discard the stem end of the chile; thinly slice into rounds. Thoroughly wash your hands, knife, and cutting board immediately after handling the chile.

Cook the rice:
2 Cook the rice:

In a small pot, combine the rice, a big pinch of salt, and 1 1/2 cups of water. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook 15 to 17 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Turn off the heat and fluff the cooked rice with a fork.

Cook the green beans:
3 Cook the green beans:

While the rice cooks, in a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the green beans; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes, or until browned and softened. Add as much of the chile as you'd like, depending on how spicy you'd like the dish to be. Cook, stirring constantly, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Transfer to a bowl. Wipe out the pan.

Cook the steaks:
4 Cook the steaks:

While the rice continues to cook, pat the steaks dry with paper towels; season with salt and pepper on both sides. In the same pan, heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned steaks and cook 3 to 4 minutes per side for medium-rare, or until browned and cooked to your desired degree of doneness. Leaving any browned bits (or fond) in the pan, transfer the cooked steaks to a cutting board and let rest for at least 5 minutes.

Make the sauce:
5 Make the sauce:

While the steaks rest, add the garlic to the pan of reserved fond; season with salt and pepper. (If the pan seems dry, add a drizzle of olive oil.) Cook on medium-high, stirring constantly, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add the ponzu sauce, sugar, the juice of 2 lime wedges, and 2 tablespoons of water. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Turn off the heat.

Slice the steaks & plate your dish:
6 Slice the steaks & plate your dish:

Find the lines of muscle (or grain) on the rested steaks; slice crosswise against the grain. Divide the lettuce leaves between 2 dishes. Fill each leaf with the cooked rice, cooked green beans, and sliced steaks. Top with the sauce. Garnish with the cilantro and mint (tearing the leaves just before adding). Serve with the remaining lime wedges on the side. Enjoy!

Tips from Home Chefs

1 Prepare the ingredients:

Wash and dry the fresh produce. Cut off and discard the stem ends of the green beans; halve crosswise. Peel and roughly chop the garlic. Quarter the lime. Cut off and discard the root end of the lettuce; carefully separate the leaves. Pick the cilantro and mint leaves off the stems; discard the stems. Cut off and discard the stem end of the chile; thinly slice into rounds. Thoroughly wash your hands, knife, and cutting board immediately after handling the chile.

2 Cook the rice:

In a small pot, combine the rice, a big pinch of salt, and 1 1/2 cups of water. Heat to boiling on high. Once boiling, cover and reduce the heat to low. Cook 15 to 17 minutes, or until the water has been absorbed and the rice is tender. Turn off the heat and fluff the cooked rice with a fork.

Cook the rice:
Cook the green beans:
3 Cook the green beans:

While the rice cooks, in a medium pan (nonstick, if you have one), heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the green beans; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, 4 to 5 minutes, or until browned and softened. Add as much of the chile as you'd like, depending on how spicy you'd like the dish to be. Cook, stirring constantly, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Transfer to a bowl. Wipe out the pan.

4 Cook the steaks:

While the rice continues to cook, pat the steaks dry with paper towels; season with salt and pepper on both sides. In the same pan, heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil on medium-high until hot. Add the seasoned steaks and cook 3 to 4 minutes per side for medium-rare, or until browned and cooked to your desired degree of doneness. Leaving any browned bits (or fond) in the pan, transfer the cooked steaks to a cutting board and let rest for at least 5 minutes.

Cook the steaks:
Make the sauce:
5 Make the sauce:

While the steaks rest, add the garlic to the pan of reserved fond; season with salt and pepper. (If the pan seems dry, add a drizzle of olive oil.) Cook on medium-high, stirring constantly, 30 seconds to 1 minute, or until fragrant. Add the ponzu sauce, sugar, the juice of 2 lime wedges, and 2 tablespoons of water. Cook, stirring frequently, 1 to 2 minutes, or until slightly thickened. Turn off the heat.

6 Slice the steaks & plate your dish:

Find the lines of muscle (or grain) on the rested steaks; slice crosswise against the grain. Divide the lettuce leaves between 2 dishes. Fill each leaf with the cooked rice, cooked green beans, and sliced steaks. Top with the sauce. Garnish with the cilantro and mint (tearing the leaves just before adding). Serve with the remaining lime wedges on the side. Enjoy!

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