Savoury Minced Pork with Lettuce Cups


This delicious, easy-to-make dish is simply stir-fried with Thai flavours. It is also fun to eat – you just wrap a little of the meat in the lettuce leaves and eat the whole thing with your fingers!


  • Spicy Dipping Sauce (nam prikpla)
  • 225 g (8 oz) iceberg lettuce
  • 1½ tablespoons groundnut (peanut) oil
  • 3 tablespoons coarsely chopped garlic
  • 3 tablespoons finely sliced shallots
  • 2 small fresh red or green Thai chillies, seeded and finely chopped
  • 450 g (1 lb) lean minced pork
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh coriander
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon shrimp paste
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • large handful fresh basil leaves, shredded


In a small bowl, combine all the ingredients for the sauce. Set aside.

Separate and wash the lettuce leaves, spin the leaves dry in a salad spinner and set them aside in the refrigerator.

Heat a wok or large frying pan over high heat until it is hot. Add the oil, and when it is very hot and slightly smoking, add the garlic, shallots and chillies and stir-fry for 2 minutes. Then add the pork and continue to stir-fry for 3 minutes. Add the coriander, fish sauce, shrimp paste and sugar and stir-fry for a further 3 minutes. Finally, add the basil and stir-fry for another minute. Arrange the lettuce and meat in separate dishes and serve at once with the spicy dipping sauce.