I devised these meatballs to be eaten as canapés at the launch party for a friend’s book about Indo-China; they were to bring back memories for all the old Indo-China hands. As it was a large gathering, I made 550 little meatballs and they disappeared astonishingly fast.
If you serve the meatballs as a main course, accompany them with Chinese noodles and steamed, sliced spring greens with soy sauce.
Put the pork into a mixing bowl. Chop the chicken very finely either by hand or in a food processor and then mix it thoroughly into the pork with a wooden spoon. Peel the garlic and ginger and chop together finely. If using kaffir lime leaves, chop them as finely as possible with a very sharp knife. Strain the lemon juice into a small saucepan and heat slightly. Stir in the sour shrimp paste until smooth, then remove from the heat and stir into the meat mixture together with the garlic, ginger and kaffir lime leaves. Add a small sprinkling of salt. Lastly, vigorously work in the coconut milk powder so that it mixes evenly.
© 1997 Josceline Dimbleby. All rights reserved.