Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Vietnamese pork skewers

A little while ago, out of the blue, the Boyfriend asked me whether I might be able to cook a dish he had eaten in Paris years ago, something thai maybe, or vietnamese, which consisted of meat and vegetables rolled up in lettuce leaves. Well, I most certainly could! I wanted to know more about the mystery dish but he couldn't remember much - only that it had been very tasty. After a little research, I settled on these vietnamese porks skewers which are rolled up in butter lettuce leaves with raw vegetables and rice noodles. The recipe is from a book called Street Food by Clare Ferguson. I'm not sure whether the Paris dish was anything like it but anyhow, the Boyfriend's (and my) verdict was: very good.

Vietnamese pork skewers (serves 4)

For the marinade:

  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 6 caffir lime leaves, very finely chopped
  • 20cm-long piece lemon grass stalk, finely chopped
  • 5cm-long piece ginger, finely chopped
  • 1 small chili, chopped
  • 500g pork fillet, cut into 1cm-cubes
  • 12 wooden skewers, soaked in water for thirty minutes
For the dipping sauce:
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 red or green chiili, chopped
  • 5cm-long piece spring onion, green part only, finely chopped
To serve:
  • 15 butter lettuce leaves
  • 250g rice noodles, cooked (I served them warm, but cold would be fine, too)
  • 1 carrot, cut into thin sticks
  • 1/3 cucumber, cut into thin sticks
  • finely chopped herbs, such as peppermint, basil, coriander, parsely or chives
  • soy sprouts
Stir all the ingredients for the marinade together in a non-metallic bowl. Add the meat and let marinate for 20 minutes. Put 6-7 meat cubes onto each skewer and cook the meat on the grill or in a hot frying pan for four minutes until browned from all sides. Keep warm. Deglaze the residue in the pan with the remaining marinade and cook for a few minutes until it thickens. Pour over the meat.

Mix all the ingredients for the dipping sauce. To eat, place a lettuce leave on your plate, then add some noodles, vegetable sticks, meat and herbs. Don't overdo the noodles - consider yourself warned. Roll up and dip in the sauce. Messy but fun.

1 comment:

Trudy said...

This dish looks really tasty. It reminds me of san choy bow, a Chinese appetizer made with ground pork (or chicken) and vegetables wrapped in lettuce leaves.