Wednesday 21 May 2014

Vietnamese Meatball Buns with a Spicy Tomato Sauce

I’ve been experimenting with meatballs lately. I had some ground turkey and I wanted to make some Vietnamese flavoured ones; ideally they would have gone better with pork, but I only had turkey! They turned out fantastic! I really loved them. They’re basically my take on a bánh mì sandwich. Of course I also didn’t have any baguette either, but I had buns and it worked!! The flavours were all there. I even pickled some carrots and cucumber to give it an extra crunch, since the meatballs are soft. Top with fresh chillies and coriander you’ve got yourself a massive punch of flavour! As an added bonus I’m including the recipe for the spicy tomato sauce I made to go on the bread, if you’re feeling up to it turns into a delicious thick ketchup type of sauce, thick and glorious, wonderful on many things! This recipe can serve 2-3 depending on how many meatballs you make. I got 18 small meatballs out of this, and can fit about six in a sandwich. Enjoy!
Vietnamese Meatball Buns
My take on a bánh mì!

250g turkey breast mince
1 small red onion
1 chilli (or half depending on how hot they are)
1 tbsp. freshly grated ginger
2 garlic cloves also grated to a puree
1 spring onion
Small handful fresh coriander
Dash sesame oil
1-2 tbsp. soy sauce
50g bread crumbs soaked in a little milk
1 egg white

To start: (If you’re making the sauce, I would recommend starting that first; see bottom)
Dice finely, small red onion, chilli, coriander and spring onion.
Grate the ginger and garlic into a paste.
In a bowl, mix together minced turkey, soy sauce, sesame oil, bread crumbs, egg white and diced vegetables including ginger and garlic.
Mix thoroughly; hands are best here!

To Cook:
I used a non-stick skillet so I’m able to not use oil, if you’re using oil, only use a tablespoon or two to get it done.
Get the pan on high heat, while it’s heating make your meatballs.
It helps me if you get your hands wet before you dive into the mixture to make the balls.
Form into small 1-2 inch balls and set aside.
When the pan is hot, set them down and fry to get a good colour on them.
Try not to turn them before they’ve got the proper brown color because they’ll just stick and pull apart.
I like to put a bit of water in the pan and cover with a tight lid for a few minutes until they’re done.
Since they are small they will cook really fast.
When they’re done pop some sauce on a bun and get them in your tummy!

If you would like to pickle some vegetables to go with the sandwich all you need is the 1:1 ratio sugar to white vinegar. I use slightly less sugar because I prefer the punch of the vinegar.
Heat up the sugar vinegar mixture until the sugar is dissolved.
Slice some vegetables like carrot, cucumber, chillies and red onion finely and place in the solution and sit for about 20-30 minutes. Enjoy!

Spicy Asian Tomato Sauce

To be honest, I know that tomato isn’t a base for many sauces in Asian cuisine but I wanted to make a thick bbq like sauce. This is dead simple, all you have to do is dump all of these ingredients into a pan, bring up to a boil and simmer for about an hour until it’s thick and syrupy.

1 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp. hoisin sauce
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1 tbsp. fish sauce
3 tbsp. honey
1 onion diced
3 cloves garlic diced or grated
1 knob ginger grated to a paste
1 tbsp. Chinese five spice
½ tsp. red chilli flakes (I used the hot Korean kind)

1 comment:

  1. That is really a wonderful dish. I love those flavours.