Recipe adapted from Thank You for Smoking by Paula Disbrowe (Ten Speed Press, 2019).
For the curry salt:
¼ cup madras curry
¼ cup kosher salt
2 tablespoons gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes)
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon smoked marjoram or oregano
For the pickled carrots and radishes:
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into thin matchsticks
15 radishes, thinly sliced
½ cup sugar
1 tablespoon kosher salt
½ cup rice wine vinegar
For the steak:
1 (2½-pound) tri-tip steak
Vegetable oil for drizzling
Salt and pepper to taste
2 garlic cloves, minced or grated
2 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
2 teaspoons spicy curry salt
12 Bibb lettuce leaves
1 cup Thai basil leaves
½ cup chopped cilantro
½ cup chopped mint
Pickled carrots and radishes for serving
Sambal oelek for serving
Make the curry salt: In a small bowl, combine all curry salt ingredients. Set aside. (Store leftover blend in a sealed container in a cool, dark place for up to 2 months.)
Make the pickled carrots and radishes: In a large bowl, combine carrot, radishes, sugar, and salt and use your fingers to gently massage seasonings into vegetables until dissolved. Transfer vegetables and their liquid to a clean quart-sized jar. Add 1 cup water and rice wine vinegar and stir to combine. Use immediately, or refrigerate overnight for a crisper texture and more flavor. (Store in refrigerator for up to 1 week.)
Make the steak: Place steak on a baking sheet and use a paring knife to make several ½-inch incisions on both sides. Drizzle with enough oil to lightly coat and generously season with salt and pepper. In a small bowl, combine garlic, ginger, and spicy curry salt. Rub mixture over entire surface of meat. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour to marinate.
Prepare a charcoal grill for two-zone cooking and build a medium fire, or heat a gas grill to medium high. When coals are glowing red and covered with a fine gray ash, add smoke source (chips, chunks, or a log). Carefully wipe preheated grill grates with a lightly oiled paper towel. Scrape grates clean with a grill brush, then wipe with oiled towel again.
When the fire begins to produce a steady stream of smoke, place steak over direct heat and grill for 5 to 6 minutes. Flip and cook an additional 15 to 17 minutes, flipping every 4 to 5 minutes, until internal temperature at the thickest part reaches 125 degrees (carryover heat will take it to 130 degrees for medium-rare as it rests).
Transfer steak to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Thinly slice meat against the grain and arrange on a serving platter with lettuce, herbs, pickled vegetables, and hot sauce.