Nat cooked these as part of a Chin Chin-themed afternoon (great Melbourne and Sydney South East Asian noshery) and wow, they’re great. Hot, juicy, absolutely full of flavour, totally fun.
We grilled them and ate them on the spot.
As part of an afternoon with friends, these would be perfect with cold beers and lots of other hot, Asian nibbles on the grill.
(Fingers crossed Sydney’s lockdown ends by Christmas so we can do just that!)
1 stalk lemongrass (pale part only), chopped
1 large red chilli, chopped
2 shallots, chopped
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 bunch coriander root, chopped
1 tsp black peppercorns
300gm wagyu beef mince
1 tsp mild curry powder
1/2 bunch miny leaves, picked, roughly chopped
1 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp caster sugar
20 betel leaves*
1 tbs ground roast rice**
1/2 cup nahm jim jaew
4 lemon cheeks
20 toothpicks, soaked in water
- Pound or blitz the lemongrass, chilli, shallot, garlic, coriander root and pepper to make a paste.
- In a bowl, combine all the ingredients down to and including the caster sugar, before checking the seasoning.
- Roll the mixture into 20 balls of equal size.
- Roll the balls into individual betal leaves an ‘sew’ each together with a toothpick.
- Heat a chargrill pan (or grill) and cook the parcels for about 90 seconds each side.
- Garnish with ground roast rice and serve with a dash of nahm jim jaew and some lemon cheeks for squeezing.
* I wandered into our local Thai restauarnt who was happy to sell me a bag. Harris Markets and other fancy fruit and vegetable shops I went to in the Lower North Shore of Sydney came up stumps. Speaks to the size of the Thai community in my part of town I guess.
**Roast rice in a pan until golden. Allow to cool and then blitz in a spice grinder until ground. Store in a dry container.