Stuffed Lemongrass

Gourmet's Adventures with Ruth: Season One: The Tamarind School, Laos

Makes10 stuffed lemongrass
December 2009
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  • 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 kaffir lime leaf, very finely sliced
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 5 scallions, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup chopped Thai basil or basil leaves
  • 8 oz ground chicken, pork, or beef
  • 10 stalks lemongrass
  • 1 qt vegetable oil for frying
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • Special equipment

    a deep fat thermometer
  • With a mortar and pestle, mash garlic, lime leaf, and salt to a paste. Add scallions, cilantro and basil to mortar and pound to soften. Add ground meat into mashed herbs, stirring to blend well.
  • Starting 1/2 inch from bottom of a lemongrass stalk, with tip of knife make a 4-inch-long lengthwise cut. Rotate lemongrass stalk a little at a time, making more lengthwise cuts all around lemongrass stalk. Hold lemongrass with one end in each hand and move ends toward each other. This should open sliced portion of stalk to make a "basket." Repeat with remaining lemongrass stalks.
  • Spoon about 2 tablespoons meat mixture into center of each lemongrass "basket."
  • Heat oil to 375°F in a 3-quart saucepan. Dip stuffed part of 2 lemongrass stalks in beaten eggs, turning to coat, and fry, turning occasionally, until golden and cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer stuffed lemongrass stalks to paper towels to drain. Coat and fry remaining stuffed lemongrass stalks in batches of 2, returning oil to 375F between batches.
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