Gordon's version of this popular Vietnamese baguette is packed with marinated steak, traditional pickled veg, mayonnaise and chilli sauce
Gordon: "This Vietnamese 'sandwich' is so popular that I realised I had in fact eaten banh mi in Europe long before my travels in Vietnam. Although the exact contents of this dish are open to personal interpretation, it should always consist of a baguette, pickled vegetables, meat (beef, pork or chicken – some banh mi include all three!), fresh cucumber, coriander and a sauce such as chilli mayonnaise.
The Vietnamese often prepare pâtés as a sandwich filling, along with braised meats that cook for hours. For me, making a sandwich should be a quick affair, but I admit this recipe is not exactly simple. However, I have tried to compromise between the extended Vietnamese preparation and the simple English sandwich. I am, and will always remain, a fan of the humble steak sandwich, and so with a tender marinated rib-eye and some fresh cucumber and chilli mayonnaise, here is my Banh mi."
For the pickled vegetables
To assemble the sandwich
Place the steaks in a shallow dish. Mix the rest of the ingredients in a bowl and pour over the meat. Marinate for 3 hours or overnight.
Just before cooking, mix the carrot, daikon, salt, rice vinegar, sugar, chilli and garlic in a large bowl and toss together well. Prepare the cucumber. Combine the mayonnaise and chilli sauce and set aside.
Place a heavy-bottomed frying pan over a high heat, allow it to get smoking hot then add the steaks. Cook for 2½–3 minutes on each side for medium. If you like your steak well done, cook for another minute each side. If you like your steak rare, cook for a minute less on each side. Remove from the pan and rest for 5 minutes.
Slice the baguette lengthways. Slice each steak on the diagonal into 5 slices. Spread the chilli mayonnaise on both sides of the bread.
Place the beef on the mayonnaise then pile on top the pickled vegetables, cucumber, red pepper and coriander, and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Top with the other half of bread. Slice the baguette into four and serve immediately.
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