Tender pork fillet and spicy patties are contrasted with the sweetness of chilli jam to make a rich dish perfect for chilly winter months.
You will need an oven-proof frying pan, a steamer and a food processor for this recipe.
250g/9oz pork mince
2 tbsp Thai fish sauce
5cm/2in fresh root ginger, peeled and grated
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tbsp coriander leaves, roughly chopped
salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ lime, juice only
vegetable oil, for deep frying
75g/2¾oz plain flour
2 free-range eggs, beaten
90g/3¼oz Panko breadcrumbs
150g/5½oz caster sugar
2 red chillies, roughly chopped
3 plum tomatoes, roughly chopped
2 lemongrass stems, tough outer leaves removed, finely chopped
25g/1oz fresh root ginger, roughly chopped
2 garlic cloves, peeled, left whole
2 small shallots, roughly chopped
4 tbsp Thai fish sauce
40ml/3 tbsp sesame oil
50ml/2 fl oz dark soy sauce
2 tbsp clear honey
3 limes, juice and zest
110g/3¾oz crème fraîche
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
Season the pork fillet with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Heat an oven-proof frying pan until hot, add the oil then the pork fillet, and sear until golden-brown on all sides, about 30-45 seconds on each side.
Transfer the pan to the oven and roast for 6-8 minutes. Remove from the oven and rest for five minutes in the pan.
Meanwhile, heat a steamer until the water is simmering. Add the pak choi, cover and steam for 3-4 minutes until the pak choi is tender.
Dress the pak choi with a little sesame oil, salt and black pepper.
For the patties, prepare a shallow tray lined with cling film. In a large bowl mix together the pork mince, fish sauce, ginger, garlic, coriander leaves and lime juice until well combined. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Press the mixture into a cling film-lined shallow tray to the depth of about 1.5cm/½in. Smooth over so the mince is totally flat. Place in the fridge to chill for one hour then remove and cut into 5cm/2in squares.
Heat a deep fat fryer to 190C/375F. Alternatively, heat vegetable oil in a deep-sided, heavy-based saucepan until a breadcrumb sizzles and turns brown when dropped into it. (CAUTION: hot oil can be dangerous. Do not leave unattended.)
Get three bowls, and put the flour into one, beaten egg in another, and breadcrumbs in the third.
Dredge each pattie first in the flour, then dip it in the beaten egg, then roll it in the breadcrumbs until completely coated.
Carefully lower the spiced pork patties into the hot oil and fry for 3-4 minutes, or until crisp and golden-brown and completely cooked through. Remove from the pan using a slotted spoon and set aside to drain on kitchen paper. Keep warm until needed.
For the chilli jam, blend all the chilli jam ingredients, except the sugar and crème fraîche, in a food processor to a smooth purée.
Heat the sugar in a heavy-based saucepan over a low to medium heat until it melts and forms a golden-brown caramel. Do not stir and keep an eye on it so that it doesn’t burn.
Once the sugar has caramelised, pour in the puréed chilli jam mixture and stir well. Bring the mixture to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 4-5 minutes, or until sticky and jam-like. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool slightly.
To serve, carve the pork fillet into thick slices then divide amongst the plates. Place the pork patties alongside with the pak choi. Finally, spoon the chilli jam over and finish with a quenelle of crème fraiche.
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