Bò cuốn lá lốt is usually served within the Bo 7 Mon (7 Course Beef). This beef wrap with Piper Lolot leaves is hard NOT to like. It is full of flavor and aroma.
Piper Lolot Leaves VS Betel Leaves
After much debate and reserach AFTER I made this video recipe, The leaves I used in this recipe is the Piper Lolot leaves, NOT the Betel Leaves. At first when Googled “la lot”, the first translation was the betel leaves. But if dove deeper, the correct leaf was the Piper Lolot.
The Piper Lolot Leaves (La Lot) and the Betel Leaves (La Trau) is VERY similar in look. But they are VERY different in taste and health benefits.
In Vietnam, the Betel Leaves are used as a sort of chewing tobacco along with areca (cau). This has a long tale and history that is part of the Vietnamese culture. They use this as an offering for traditional Vietnamese wedding.
As for the Piper Lolot leaves, they grow in a sort of bush/stem. While their cousin the Betel Leaves grows like a vine. Both leaves shape and look the same, but the Piper lolot has a peppery taste, and aromatic smell when cooked. On the other hand, the Betel Leaves has herbal smell, with a medicinal taste.
Don’t get this leaf mixed up with lá trầu, which is in the same family. But one is used for a source of nicotine chewing tobacco, while the other one is use for cooking. I made this mistake once when I bought some at the supermarket. The name is the same for some reason. Even when I searched it on google, they had the same name. But their scientific name is different. Piper Lolot leaves and betel leaves. They are similar in shape and color. But they definitely taste different. One is a vine and another is a bush. The one I got were from a bush.
We eat these with fresh lettuce, variety of mints, pickled vegetables, and either mixed fish sauce or mixed mam nem (anchovy sauce). I prefer the mam nem, as it adds a bolder taste and flavor.
Bo Cuon La Lot | Beef Wrap In Piper Lolot Leaves | Betel Leaves
Ground Beef Mix
- 4 lbs ground beef 80% Lean 20% fat
- 60+ Each Piper Lolot leaves (Lá Lốt) ~10 Leaves finely minced, ~50+ for beef wrap
- 6 Oz Pork Fat Finely minced
- 2-3 Each Fresh Lemongrass Finely minced
- 2 Each Large Shallots Finely minced
- 1 Whole Garlic cloves Finely Minced
- 2 Tsp Ground Black Pepper
- 1 Tsp 5 Spice Powder
- 2 Tbsp Oyster Sauce
- 2 Tbsp Sugar
- 1 Tbsp Chicken Granulated Seasoning OR 1 tsp MSG
- 3/4 Cup Toasted Peanuts Crushed
- 1 Tbsp Corn Starch
Mam Nem Sauce (Anchovy Sauce)
- 1 bottle Fermented anchovy Fish sauce
- 1/2 Each Sweet Pineapple OR 1 Can Pineapple Chunks
- 1 Whole Garlic Peeled
- 3-5 Each Red Chili
- 1-2 Each Lime
- 6-8 Tbsp Sugar Depending on how salty your brand of sauce is. TO TASTE
- Coconut Juice/Water To dilute
- Vermicelli Noodle Sheets
- Rice Paper
- Vietnamese Mints
- Pickeled Daikon & Carrots
Wrap Beef In Leaves
- Combine all ingredients (EXCEPT the whole Lolot Leaves).Mix Well.
- Wrap the beef in the leaves. Pan fry 1 pc to taste. Adjust mixture to your taste.
- Shiny side of the leaf out. Do a few at a time to speed you process.
- 5-6 on each skewer.
- Grill or pan fry. (charcoal grill is best)
Mam Nem Sauce
- Blend all ingredients in blender.
- Add More Sugar & Dilute with water/coconut juice to your taste.