MasterChef winners Karena and Kasey Bird write a fortnightly food column in Living.

Kasey and Karena: Easy as (+recipes)

Rice vermicelli always goes down well with the family.
Beef fillet vermicelli.
Beef fillet vermicelli.

There are not many things in life more pleasing than hearing the satisfied slurps of our family devouring the dish we have made.

There is a certain beauty - the thin strands of translucency woven around herbs, all coated in a complex and fresh sauce - to vermicelli we can't get enough of.

We adore the mouth-feel of the rice flour noodles and their ability to carry flavours so well, and we can't forget to mention how easy they are to prepare. When we cook our vermicelli we always rinse them off in cold running water; this stops them from sticking together so each strand can be properly coated in whatever sauce you choose to serve with them.3

This week we are sharing two of our very easy and delicious dishes using these beautiful vermicelli noodles. Whenever we want a quick and tasty meal, these are two of our go-to dishes.

Beef fillet with coconut vermicelli

Serves 4

400gm beef fillet
1 Tbsp oil
Salt and pepper
1 Tbsp ground coriander
200gm rice vermicelli noodles, cooked as per packet instructions and run under cold water
½ cup mint leaves, torn
½ cup basil leaves, torn
1 green chilli, chopped
For the dressing
cup coconut milk
1 Tbsp grated ginger
1 garlic clove, crushed

Heat a large fry pan over high heat. Oil the steak and season with salt and pepper, coat in the ground coriander.

Cook the steak for 3-4 minutes on each side or more if you prefer your steak medium to well.

Set aside to cool. Slice into 1cm slices.

To make the dressing:
Combine all ingredients together. Place vermicelli in a bowl with the mint, basil and chilli and sliced beef. Add half of the dressing and combine gently. Place in serving bowls and spoon over the remaining dressing.

Lemongrass chicken with vermicelli

Serves 4

400gm rice vermicelli noodles, cooked as per packet instructions and rinsed in cold water
2 Tbsp oil
1 Tbsp grated ginger
2 stalks lemongrass, finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped
650gm free-range chicken mince
¼ cup lime juice
¼ cup fish sauce
1 tbsp palm sugar
¾ cup coriander leaves
¾ cup basil leaves
4 spring onions chopped

Heat a large fry pan over high heat. Add the oil, ginger, lemongrass and chilli and cook for 1 minute.

Add the chicken mince and cook for a further 7 minutes or until cooked through.

Add all the other ingredients and mix together completely. Place in serving bowls and enjoy.

- Spy.co.nz

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