- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- 1 cilantro root or 4 cilantro stems, finely minced
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 pound ground pork (pork shoulder)
- 1/4 cup minced lemongrass (see note)
- 4 lemongrass stalks, cut into 8 pieces, 4 inches long
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- Plum Sauce or sweet chili sauce
In a mortar and pestle, pound garlic, cilantro root or cilantro stems, salt and pepper together to make a paste. Or, with the flat side of a large knife, “scrape” minced cilantro, garlic, salt and pepper across a cutting board to blend into a paste. Mix the paste with sugar and soy sauce until blended.
In a large bowl, combine garlic paste with pork and minced lemongrass. Mix well and divide into 8 patties. Flatten each patty in the palm of your hand into a disc and place lemongrass stalk in the center; wrap the patty firmly around the stalk to seal.
Heat a grill to medium-high and brush lightly with canola oil. Grill pork so all sides are cooked, 5 to 8 minutes. Serve with Plum Sauce or sweet chili sauce.
To mince lemongrass, trim off the tough root end, about 1 inch, and the top part, leaving 6 to 8 inches of the stalk. Pound the stalk with a heavy object, such as a meat hammer, then finely mince the softer parts of the lemongrass. For a demonstration, see Pranee’s video at youtube.com/ilovethaicooking.