Recipe courtesy of James Babian

Kiawe-Grilled Flank Steak and Spicy Green Papaya Salad

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 10 hr 45 min
  • Prep: 25 min
  • Inactive: 10 hr
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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2 ounces salad oil

2 tablespoons lemongrass, minced (lower part of inner stem)

1 1/2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger

1 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons fresh squeezed lime juice

2 teaspoons patis (fish sauce)

4 tablespoons sweet chili sauce

1 Hawaiian or Thai chile pepper, finely minced

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 teaspoons sambal (chili paste)

Flank Steak:

8 ounces flank steak

Papaya Salad:

1 green papaya, skinned, seeded and julienned

1 Maui onion, julienned

1 red bell pepper, seeded and julienned

Hawaiian sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

Mixed greens, for garnish

10 to 15 fresh mint leaves

1/8 cup fresh cilantro leaves


  1. For the marinade: Place all dressing ingredients in blender and puree until smooth. Divide in half.
  2. For the steak: Marinate the steak covered and refrigerated overnight in half of the marinade/dressing. Remove steak and discard the marinade. Season with salt and pepper. Grill to medium rare and let rest 15 minutes. When slightly cooled, thinly slice across the grain.
  3. For the papaya salad: In a mixing bowl, toss the sliced steak, green papaya, onion, red pepper, and remaining dressing. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Serve on a platter or over mixed greens.

Cook’s Note

Allow the flavors to marry by chilling the salad a couple of hours before serving. This salad holds very well and is good the next day. Can also be prepared a day ahead.