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Friday, October 24, 2008

Bo Xao La Lot (Vietnamese Sauteed Beef with Wild Betel Leaves)

La Lot (Vietnamese Wild Betel Leaf)

Now we go to the other end of the spectrum. What to do when you have an abundance of la lot (Vietnamese wild betel leaves)? Of course, you could make a whole bunch of Bo Nuong La Lot (Vietnamese Grilled Beef with Wild Betel Leaves). But what if you still have leaves left over?

I got lazy and decided to make a quick and easy stir fry. I love la lot so much, I could have easily eaten this with just the leaves sauteed in a bit of soy sauce. Lil' sis picked out the beef. So between the two us, we finished the pan.

Bo Xao La Lot (Vietnamese Sauteed Beef with Wild Betel Leaf) 1

Bo Xao La Lot (Vietnamese Sauteed Beef with Wild Betel Leaves)

You'll need:
3 or 4 dozen la lot (wild betel leaves)
1/2 lb beef, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp salt
1 tblsp soy sauce, or 2 tsp soy sauce and 2 tsp Nuoc Mam (Vietnamese Fish Sauce)
1 tsp Chinese 5-spice powder

Thinly slice the beef and mix it with the marinade ingredients. Let the mixture rest so the meat can absorb the marinade for about 10 minutes.

Wash and clean the leaves. Slice them about an inch wide. Set aside.

In a pan on high heat, add the beef, minus the liquid, and let it quickly sear. When the meat is almost done, add the liquid back in.

Bo Xao La Lot (Vietnamese Sauteed Beef with Wild Betel Leaf) 2

Then toss in the wild betel leaves.

Bo Xao La Lot (Vietnamese Sauteed Beef with Wild Betel Leaf) 3

Quickly saute until the leaves have wilted.

Bo Xao La Lot (Vietnamese Sauteed Beef with Wild Betel Leaf) 4

Serve with rice.


1 year ago today, one of the ingredients I always have in my pantry -- tree/wood ear fungus/mushroom.


  1. I didn't know that it could be eaten this way. Hmm..sorry for my stupid question, but what is the difference between wild and homegrown betel leaves?

  2. I am really drooling like mad from looking at this dish ... if only i can find a pot of betal leaves to grow in Singapore ... yours is flourishing!

  3. PP,
    Click on the link to the other recipe. Wild betel leaf and betel leaf are two different things. Wild betel leaf is a bush and VNese grill it. Non-wild betel leaf is a vine and is chewed with areca nut and lime.

    It's a tropical leaf, I think you should be able to find it in Singapore. Malaysians call it daun kaduk.

  4. Wow cool! What do the leaves taste like?

  5. No Recipes,
    It's hard to describe because there's nothing else that tastes like the leaves. All I can say is when you cook them, there's the loveliest fragrance.


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