Laap

Thailand’s northeast in one rustic dish; laap (also known as larb or larp) takes the form of minced meat seasoned with roasted rice powder, lime juice, fish sauce and fresh herbs. Be sure to eat it with sticky rice, short, fat grains of rice that are steamed and eaten by hand.

Recipe

1 tablespoon peanut oil
500g lean pork mince
1 stem lemon grass, pale section only, finely chopped
1 fresh long green chilli, finely chopped
60ml (1/4 cup) fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon sweet chilli sauce
1 teaspoon finely grated lime rind
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/3 cup fresh coriander leaves
2 tablespoons torn fresh mint
Baby cos lettuce leaves, to serve
40g (1/4 cup) finely chopped roasted peanuts, to serve

Method

1. Heat half the oil in a wok over high heat until just smoking. Add half the pork mince, lemon grass and chilli and stir-fry, breaking up any lumps, for 3-4 minutes or until pork changes colour. Transfer to a heatproof bowl. Repeat with the remaining oil, pork, lemon grass and chilli, reheating the wok between batches. Set aside for 15 minutes to cool slightly.

2. Whisk together the lime juice, fish sauce, sweet chilli sauce and lime rind in a small bowl until well combined. Drizzle the pork mixture with the dressing. Add the onion, coriander and mint and stir to combine. Spoon the pork mixture among lettuce leaves and sprinkle with peanuts to serve.