½ Asian cucumber, peeled,
halved lengthwise, seeded, and thinly sliced
1 small hot red or green
chile, thinly sliced
½ cup thinly sliced red
¼ cup chopped cilantro
½ cup soy sauce
4 teaspoons rice vinegar
2 teaspoons toasted sesame
2 teaspoons fish sauce
2 teaspoons mirin
3 garlic cloves, finely
2 teaspoons minced peeled
1 tablespoon packed light
4 teaspoons sesame seeds,
2 teaspoons red pepper
flakes or Thai chili paste
Juice of 1 lime
1 pound sirloin, rib eye, or
New York strip steak, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 scallions (white and light
green parts), cut into 1-inch lengths, plus additional, sliced, for garnish
pickle the cucumbers: In a small saucepan, heat the sugar, salt, vinegar, and ¼
cup water over medium-high heat until the sugar and salt dissolve; remove from
heat. Put the cucumber, chile, and red onion in a medium bowl, and pour the hot
brine over. Let cool; then add the cilantro. Chill.
the beef skewers: In a medium bowl, blend the soy sauce, vinegar, sesame oil,
fish sauce, mirin, garlic, ginger, brown sugar, sesame seeds, and red pepper
flakes. Pour half of the mixture into a serving bowl, add the lime juice, and
reserve for a dipping sauce. Put the beef cubes in a zipper bag and "pour in
the remaining marinade. Seal the bag and massage the marinade into the meat.
Put in a bowl, and refrigerate for 1 to 4 hours.
a grill to high heat.
the meat, discarding the marinade. Thread the cubes onto skewers (1 to 4 per
skewer), separating each cube with a round of scallion. Grill directly over
coals, turning once, until nicely charred, about 3 minutes per side.
with sliced scallions. Serve warm or cold with the reserved marinade for
dipping and the pickled cucumbers and chiles on the side.
If you're using wooden skewers, soak them in water for 30
minutes to keep them from burning.