Saturday, September 25, 2010

Dinner ala Rick Stein

Tonight for dinner I really felt like something fresh and tasty. For ages I have had Rick Steins latest book called 'Far Eastern Odyssey' and even though I have looked through it avidly, I have not yet made anything out of it. This is typical of me. I'm totally obsessed with cookbooks and cooking magazines but end up feeling totally overwhelmed by all the wonderful recipes I want to make that I end up sticking to my favourites. The only deviation from this is baking recipes as I often try new things. Anyway my lovely friend Michele (otherwise known as Moish) has also bought this book and the other day she made these Pork Balls with Peanut Dipping Sauce. This inspired me to get motivated and as I had some pork mince in the freezer it was a toss up between this dish and one which had an Asian style broth with grilled pork patties and fresh rice noodles. I decided to make my decision when I got to the Fruit and Vege shop. They didn't have any fresh rice noodles and nor did the butcher have any chicken carcasses left to make the stock so the Vietnamese pork ball it was. The sauce is a Peanut dipping sauce but isn't anything like the Indonesian or Thai style. It has Tamarind pulp and fish sauce amongst other bits and pieces. I thought it was lovely but I think I prefer the Thai or Indonesian style a bit better. The pork balls were very easy to make and the only thing I changed was that I cut back on the garlic a bit as to get the 20 gms garlic meant putting in about 7-8 decent sized cloves. I put in about 4 and I think that was plenty as the recipe only had 500 gms of pork mince in it. Although the meatballs were supposed to be threaded onto a skewer and grilled, I just cooked mine in a frying pan. I served them with plain rice and a salad of iceberg lettuce, cucumber, carrot and fresh coriander and mint. In a deviation from the recipe I ate mine wrapped in the lettuce leaves with the sauce and fresh herbs. All up it was a lovely light but tasty and filling dinner.

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