Wednesday, 15 August 2012

Thai pork burgers with a spicy dipping sauce

"I suppose some clarification of the recipe name is required...If I was at all modish I might be tempted to call them Thai pork sliders, but then you'd think I was a bit of a prat..."

Just imagine it, all the lovely tastes of Thailand in one bite. Too good to be true I hear you say, well I say no! One bite and you'll be transported back to those hot and streamy nights you spent in Bangkok - taking in a show in Patpong, hanging out with the culture vultures on the Khao San Road, generally living the dream. 

Ideally these little beauties should be eaten outside, fresh from the barbecue, pork burger in one hand, cold beer in the other. If you can't manage that don't worry about it too much, but at least open the window! Perfect for a summer's day, but if you decide to wait until the depths of winter, then they will definitely bring a little bit of sunshine into your semi-nocturnal existence.

I suppose some clarification of the recipe name is required, because these are not burgers in the usual sense - beef, bun, ketchup, mayo etc. If I was at all modish I might be tempted to call them Thai pork sliders (aka mini-burgers), but then you'd think I was a bit of a prat and the type of blogger who's in thrall to every food fad going. You know, the ones who hear that a pop-up restaurant serving only pig's spleen and radishes has opened in a bedsit above a launderette in Dalson, grab their SLRs and immediately form a queue.

I did think rissole might be a suitable name, but it just don't cut it for me, seeming to have slightly questionable connotations, so burger it must be. But instead of the bun you'll be using a nice crisp lettuce leaf to wrap up that pork, and no ketchup or mayo either, instead a fragrant little dipping sauce will provide all the lubrication required.

Thai Pork Burgers

Makes quite a few...

300g minced free range pork (no unhappy porkers please)
Thumb sized piece of ginger, grated
3 cloves garlic, also grated
Grated zest of 1 lime
2 tblsp fish sauce
2 spring onions, finely sliced
1-2 tsp dried chilli flakes (adjust according to your tolerance)
Handful of coriander, finely chopped
A neutral flavoured oil for frying - vegetable, groundnut, rapeseed etc.

  1. Embarrassingly simple to make...combine all the ingredients in a large bowl and give them a good mix, ideally using your hands, so don't be squeamish and get stuck in.
  2. It is best now to heat some oil in frying pan and cook a little bit of the mixture to see how it tastes. You might need to add some more seasoning, or another clove of garlic, or if you're worried they are too spicy, adding a small amount of sugar can balance out the heat.
  3. Once you are happy with the mix, form into little golf ball sized patties and set to one side. Here it is useful to wet your hands while handling the meat as it won't stick to them quite as much.
  4. You can then leave your mini-burgers in the fridge until you're ready to cook them, or crack on straight away. Although if you do leave them in the fridge try to take them out half an hour before cooking to get to room temperature.
  5. To cook, either fry on a medium to high heat for two to three minutes each side, or get outside, stick 'em on a hot barbie, again for two to three minutes each side and there you have it.
To serve, make sure there's plenty of crisp lettuce, little gem is best, to wrap the pork burgers in, a couple of cold beers and a bowl of the dipping sauce.

Spicy dipping sauce

All you have to do is whisk together equal quantities of fish sauce, lime juice, about a teaspoon of sugar and a pinch of dried chilli flakes in a small bowl. Again adjust the amount of chilli depending on how hot you would like it, but make sure to add the sugar, which is an important to balance out the raw heat of the chilli. If you like you can also add some grated ginger and garlic too, but I like to keep this one pretty simple.

No comments:

Post a Comment