How to cook: Grilled pork in lemongrass stalks

A popular Southeast Asian hawker food, this dish consists of minced meat flavored with chili, cumin, crushed galangal, ground coriander, coconut milk and fish sauce, wrapped around lemongrass stalks and grilled. There are Thai, Malay, Indonesian and Vietnamese versions but, for the life of me, I can’t recall any of their local names.

The lemongrass stalks are bruised before the meat mixture is wrapped around them. As a result, during grilling, the lemongrass emits its oil and flavors into the pork. I had to do the grilling indoors as it was raining earlier and the aromas that permeated the house were just unbelievable. Like citrus notes and pungent shadows dancing in the air. Oh, never mind. To even try to describe it would do this dish an injustice. I don’t think there are proper words.

And what about the taste? Juicy meat that is at once spicy, a bit salty and a bit sweet because of the coconut milk. Heighten the experience with peanut sauce on the side and it’s perfection twice over. »

Scrap ham spring rolls

scrap-ham-spring-rolls

A curious thing happened when I made puchero a few days ago. The ham bone I used to make the broth had a substantial amount of meat that, after picking and shredding, equaled to about two cups. I thought about making an omelet but decided it was too … »

How to make: Vietnamese spring rolls

vietnamese-spring-rolls

We never go to a Vietnamese restaurant without ordering spring rolls. Between Pho Hoa and Pho Bac, I prefer the latter's spring rolls. Apart from that though, my vote goes to Pho Hoa all the way. It's always been my dream to make Vietnamese spring … »