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Larb (Laap) Moo

A surprisingly refreshing Southeast Asian meat salad.

Course Main Course, Salad
Cuisine Laotian, Thai
Keyword Asian, Laotian, pork, salad, Thai
Cook Time 45 minutes
Servings 2

Ingredients

  • 1 lb ground pork can substitute ground chicken easily
  • 1 tsp cooking oil peanut or canola would work well
  • 1/2 tsp ginger, minced
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp white sugar to bring out the flavour
  • 1-2 lime(s) at least one, but nice to have slices for garnish
  • 1-2 shallot(s) Thai shallots are smaller than French or North American ones
  • 1 bunch mint
  • 1 bunch cilantro If you can find it, can also use culantro
  • 2 bunches scallions a.k.a. green onions
  • 1 bird's eye chili can also use chili powder
  • 1 heart Romaine lettuce can use any other kind of lettuce
  • 1/2 cup crushed peanuts or cashews optional
  • 1/2 cup glutinous rice also known as sweet rice or Thai sweet rice
  • 1 cup additional glutinous rice optional, for serving
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk optional, to cook with glutinous rice

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat your stainless steel pan or pot to medium heat (no higher). Add your 1/2 cup of glutinous rice to the pan and toast and toss evenly until the colour turns warm yellow. This usually takes around 15 minutes. Set aside.

  2. Add pork (or chicken) to the pan or pot with a tiny bit of cooking oil and stir fry until the meat is cooked fully through, and most of the juices have evaporated. Drain excess oil and juices if desired, and finish frying with ginger (this helps to reduce the "meat sweat" flavour). Important: make sure to turn the heat off when meat is fully cooked!

  3. Pulverize your toasted rice with a spice grinder, food processor, or a mortar and pestle. The final size of the toasted rice should be small enough to not get stuck in your teeth, but not so fine that it loses its crunchy texture. Add this to the meat salad.

  4. Loosely chop the herbs (scallions and cilantro), shallots and chilis. The mint can be pulled individually from their stems and leaves kept whole. Throw all of these items into the meat salad.

  5. Finally, add fish sauce, sugar, and lime juice to the meat salad. Toss, taste, and adjust flavour if necessary. If using chili powder instead of fresh chilis, add at this stage.

  6. Serve with Romaine lettuce leaves and your choice of crushed nuts if desired.

  7. Serve also with glutinous rice cooked with coconut milk (use 1.5 cups liquid for every 1 cup of glutinous rice and cook as you would white rice) if desired.