Spicy Thai pork salad

Great for company

This has a lot of ingredients, so it takes a while to make. But you can do it ahead and have it ready when your guests show up, and it’s very pretty to serve. Plus, it’s gluten and lactose free, if that’s an issue. This would be hard without a food processor, though.

How to make the pork:

Put all of these things in your food processor: the white part and half the green part of a bunch of green onions, half a bunch of cilantro, a teaspoon of brown sugar, two cloves of garlic, a teaspoon of grated ginger, a teaspoon of lemon (or lime) zest, two tablespoons of canola oil (or peanut oil), a tablespoon of soy sauce, a tin of anchovies, and a teaspoon of red pepper flakes (or a chopped jalapeno). Blend into a sauce.

Grease a roasting pan. Slice one thin pork tenderloin into slices about half an inch thick and arrange them in one layer in the roasting pan, then spoon half the sauce over the top of the pork slices. Set the oven to broil, and cook the pork for about five minutes, turn the pieces, spoon the other half of the sauce over the other side, and cook until done. Keep an eye on it so they don’t get overcooked.

While the pork is cooking, make the salad:

Rinse out the food processor and switch to the chopping blade. Chop half a head of cabbage into slaw and lay it out on a large platter. Slice half a cucumber into thin sticks and arrange them on top of the slaw. Sprinkle about half a cup of chopped green onion and half a cup of chopped cilantro on top. Sprinkle about two teaspoons of dried basil and two tablespoons of dried mint over the salad.

When the pork is done, arrange the pieces on top of the salad, and ladle the sauce over the top. Scatter 1/2 cup of crushed cashew nuts and 1/4 cup of coconut flakes on top. Serve warm or cold, with slices of melon or mango, or fried zucchini dredged in flour, or both.

Vegetarian or vegan?

Neither – this is really a meat dish, even though it has a lot of vegetables in it. I guess you could do it with chik’n or something too.

And will this salad keep?

The salad will be better the same day, though you could eat the leftover meat in sandwiches the next day or anytime for three or four days.

Published by Karen Carr

Dr. Karen Carr is Associate Professor Emerita, Department of History, Portland State University. She holds a doctorate in Classical Art and Archaeology from the University of Michigan. Follow her on Instagram, Pinterest, or Facebook, or buy her book, Vandals to Visigoths.

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