Use fresh flat rice noodles for their delicate texture and tamarind puree for a lovely sour taste.
1 packet fresh noodles (about 400g)
2 cloves garlic
1 large mild red chilli, deseeded (optional)
2 tsp white pepper
¼ red onion, finely diced
2 tbsp rice bran oil
500g minced pork
1 tsp tamarind puree
4 kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp fish sauce
1 carrot, shredded
1 red capsicum, shredded
1 cucumber, shredded
1 cup basil leaves
1 cup coriander leaves
Deep fried shallots and crushed peanuts to serve
1. Place noodles in a large heatproof bowl and pour boiling water over to cover. Allow to stand for a few minutes, stir to loosen noodles, drain and set aside.
2. Place garlic, chilli, pepper and onion in a mortar and pestle and pound to a paste (you can also use a food processor).
3. Heat oil in a wok, fry paste for a minute, then add pork mince and fry for a few minutes until browned.
4. Add tamarind puree, lime leaves, brown sugar and fish sauce and cook for a few minutes. Taste and adjust flavouring. It should taste sweet and sour, spicy and salty.
5, Add carrot, capsicum, cucumber and noodles. Toss well to combine. Add herbs and remove from heat.
6. Serve in bowls topped with shallots and peanuts.
Notes: Use different noodles for variety. I have used fresh flat rice noodles for their delicate texture.
Tamarind puree gives a lovely sour taste and is available from Asian stores. Or you can use tamarind juice by soaking tamarind pulp in warm water.