This stir-fry is a snap once you make the paste. You can use red or green store-bought curry paste – it's quick but not as perfect.
3 tbsp vegetable oil
350g beef fillet, thickly sliced (about 1cm) across the grain
1 tbsp grated palm sugar
3 tbsp fish sauce
100g sugar snap peas, trimmed
50g fresh black fungi, torn
1 tbsp coriander leaves
half a lime, cut into wedges
FOR THE SPICE PASTE
2 dried long red chillies, deseeded, soaked in warm water for 30 minutes and chopped
3 red shallots, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tbsp galangal, peeled and chopped
2 lemongrass stalks, tough outer leaves removed, chopped
6 coriander roots, cleaned, scraped and chopped
½ tsp coriander seeds, roasted and crushed
6 white peppercorns, roasted and crushed
1 tsp sea salt
1. Pound the spice paste ingredients in a mortar with a pestle until you have a fine paste. Or process in a blender, adding a little water if necessary.
2. Heat a wok until just smoking. Add the oil and, when hot, stir-fry the beef in batches until well browned (2-3 minutes), then remove from the wok. Placing the beef into the freezer for 30 minutes prior to slicing will make the process easier.
3. Add paste to wok and stir-fry until fragrant, then add the palm sugar and fish sauce. Return the beef to the wok with the sugar snap peas and black fungi and stir-fry for a minute to integrate the flavours. Serve with the coriander and lime juice to taste.
Serve with steamed rice.
Goes well with Neil Perry's stir-fried iceberg lettuce