|Jin lung (Shan-style Thai Meatballs)|
Jin lung are a local type of meatball, rich in fresh herbs and often yellow in colour from the addition of ground turmeric. They’re most commonly made from pork, but beef and fish versions can be found on occasion.
500 g minced (ground) pork
1 tbsp ground turmeric (ម្សៅរមៀត)
3 tomatoes, seeded, thinly sliced
2 kaffir lime leaves (ស្លឹកក្រូចសើច), thinly sliced
vegetable oil, for deep-frying
fried crisp garlic and steamed rice, to serve
10 small dried chillies
1 tbsp coriander seeds (គ្រាប់ជីវ៉ាន់ស៊ុយ)
6 French shallots, sliced
2 lemongrass stalks (ស្លឹកគ្រៃ), white part only, thinly sliced
12 small garlic cloves, peeled
1 tbsp shrimp paste
1 tsp salt
To make the chilly paste, using a mortar and pestle, pound the dried chillies until coarse. Add the coriander seeds, shallots, lemongrass, garlic, shrimp paste and salt, and pound until you have a fine paste.
To make the meatballs, add the pork, turmeric and tomatoes to the chilly paste mixture. Using the mortar and pestle, pound to blend the mixture thoroughly and tenderize the pork – the mixture should have fine, silky texture and the ingredients should be thoroughly amalgamated. When you have reached this texture, add the eggs, stirring with a spoon to combine thoroughly.
Heat a generous amount of oil in a wok over medium heat. Form one small ball of the meatball mixture and test in the oil; if the oil is too hot, the meatballs will be cooked on the outside but will still be raw inside. Form the remaining meatball mixture into balls, then deep-fry, in batches, over low heat until meatballs are cooked inside and golden outside – this should take a few minutes.
Drizzle the jin lung with a bit of the oil and serve with fried crisp garlic and steamed rice.