Fully known as thit bo nuong la lot (thịt bò nướng lá lốt), this Vietnamese dish includes minced beef mixed with garlic and shallots and some simple spices, wrapped into wild betel leaves (also known as piper lolot leaves), rolled up like cigars, and grilled over hot charcoal.
(This recipe can make about 20-24 rolls.)
1 £ of ground beef (or you can also use a mixture such 1/2 beef and pork or 1/2 beef and chicken)
1/2 tablespoon of finely minced garlic
1/2 tablespoon of finely minced shallots
1 tablespoon of curry powder
2 tablespoon of chopped lemon grass
2 teaspoons of fish sauce
2 teaspoons of sugar
1 teaspoon of cracked pepper
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 package of fresh or frozen betel leaves (if none availble, use perilla leaves. If using frozen betel leaves, allow to defrost outside and separate leaves and allow to dry slightly on paper towels before wrapping )
3 tablespoons roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
4 tablespoons of scallion oil (heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil, remove from heat and add finely chopped scallions)
In a large bowl, combine meat with garlic, shallots, lemongrass, curry, fish sauce, sugar, pepper and salt and mix well and set aside in fridge and prepare leaves.
To prepare the leaves, detach the leaves from their stems and roll with glossy side facing down. Place a generous 1 tablespoon full of meat near the base of the leave and shape accordingly. Roll the base over making sure that the length of the meat doesn’t exceed the width of the leaf. Secure the apex of the leaf with a tiny bit of meat mixture, using it as a paste. Use a scissor to cut of any excess ends of betel leaf.
In Vietnam, these are grilled over small charcoal ovens, but you have multiple great options. You can grill using skewers or a grilling basket or broil in the oven for about 6-8 minutes, turning a few times to prevent the leaves from burning.
After the bo la lot rolls are finished grilling, they are served accompanied by Vietnamese rice paper, bun vermicelli rice noodles, and a host of herbs and raw vegetables on the side.
Finally, some extra dipping sauces, and freshly crushed chili, is what elevates the flavor of bo la lot to even higher levels of delicious.
The mix of of flavorful meat grilled in an herbaceous leaf, paired with raw vegetables, and being able to assemble each roll yourself, are the reasons why bo la lot is such an amazing Vietnamese dish.
Bo La Lot is served with rice noodles
Bo La Lot is put on skewers as a favorite street food