Magazine article Sunset

Mostly Fiery, They're Party Appetizers from Thailand

Magazine article Sunset

Mostly Fiery, They're Party Appetizers from Thailand

Article excerpt

Mostly fiery, they're party appetizers from Thailand Called the charcuterie of Thailand, Chiang Mai produces fine sausages and other pork specialties known throughout the country. Many visitors to this city make it a point to sample dishes made from the favored pig.

At the Kettawa Restaurant, Prapitpong Ketkarn and Akkadej Nakballung serve northern Thai favorites. Here we offer some of their pork dishes that you can make at home. Serve them for a first course of a party appetizer, or as part of an Asian meal.

Offer spicy meatballs falvored with curry paste and chunks of peppery roast pork to dip in a green chili sauce. With this sauce, you might also present traditional accompaniments such as cucumber slices, cabbage wedges, whole green onions, cauliflower flowerets, and purchased fried pork rinds.

Another popular snack is ground pork seasoned with chilies and herbs, eaten with bites of crisp raw vegetables, lightly browned small dry red chilies, and raw shallots. Any of these fiery starters taste best with an icy glass of beer, water, or tea to quench the heat.

With the greater distribution of Southeast Asian ingredients in the West, you'll find fresh lemon grass, fish souce, dark soy sauce, and oyster sauce in well-supplied supermarkets and Asian grocery stores. If you can't find them in your area, use the readily available substitutes.

Thai Spicy Sausage (Si Uah)

Traditionally, this pork mixture is forced into sausage casings, sliced, and grilled. To save time, shape it into small meatballs and brown in a hot oven.

1 pound ground lean pork Red curry paste (recipe follows) 1 tablespoon fish sauce (nam pla or nuoc mam) or soy sauce Roasted chili sauce (recipe follows)

Mix the pork, curry paste, and fish sauce until well blended. Roll mixture into 1-inch balls and place about 1 inch apart in 10- by 15-inch baking pans. (If made ahead, cover and chill up until next day.)

Bake in a 450[degrees] oven until browned and no longer pink in center (cut to test), 10 to 15 minutes. Place on a serving dish. Makes 35 to 40, enough for 8 appetizer servings.

Per serving: 120 cal.> 11 g protein> 7.6 g fat> 1.6 g carbo.> 44 mg sodium> 42 mg chol.

Red curry paste. Trim root end, tough tops, and outer leaves from 2 stalks fresh lemon grass. Mince tender portion to make about 3 tablespoons. (Or use 1 teaspoon grated lemon peel instead of lemon grass.) Combine minced lemon grass, 4 teaspoons ground dry New Mexico or California chilies, 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger, 1/4 teaspoon ground coriander, and 1/8 teaspoon ground turmeric> mix well.

Pork with Pepper (Moo Tod)

Coat pork chunks generously with black pepper and garlic and a combination of sweet dark soy sauce (contains sugar or molasses), salty fish sauce, and richly flavored oyster sauce> then oven-brown.

1 1/2 pounds boned country-style pork ribs or shoulder, fat trimmed 1 teaspoon ground coriander 1 1/2 tablespoons black peppercorns or 1 tablespoon coarse-ground pepper 2 tablespoons minced garlic 1 tablespoon dark soy sauce (or soy sauce plus 1/2 teaspoon sugar) 1 tablespoon oyster sauce or soy sauce 1 teaspoon fish sauce (nam pla or nuoc mam) or soy sauce Roasted chili sauce (recipe follows)

Cut pork into about 3/4-inch chunks. …

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