Project Description

Recipe by Chef Ben Bertei from The Spirit House

Original coming from the Northern Thai/ Burmese border, these little snacks are an amazing combination of flavours & textures. Made with`betel’ leaves but can be made with spinach or lettuce leaves if betel leaves are unavailable.

Makes 6-8 canapes
Preparation Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 10 minutes

1 tablespoon dried shrimp
2 tablespoons coconut, shredded and roasted
1 tablespoon peanuts, roasted and crushed
1 teaspoon galangal
1 teaspoon ginger
1 teaspoon shrimp paste, roasted
½ cup (135g) palm sugar
¼ cup (60ml) water
¼ cup (60mls) fish sauce
¼ cup (60mls) tamarind water or puree

200g Peking duck meat, shredded
2 tablespoons lemon grass, finely sliced
1 red banana chilli, de seeded and sliced
1 birds eye chilli, finely sliced
1 teaspoon lime zest
1 tablespoon ginger, julienned
2 tablespoons red grapes (sliced)
3 tablespoons coconut (shredded and roasted)
2 tablespoons peanuts (roasted and chopped)

  1. To serve
    Fresh betel leaves
  2. For dressing: pound the dried shrimps, peanuts and coconut in a mortar and pestle. Add the galangal, ginger and shrimp paste and continue to pound to form a paste. Heat sugar and water in a saucepan over low heat. Simmer until it makes a thick syrup and is caramelized but not burnt.  Add the paste and stir to form a honey consistency. Add tamarind paste and fish sauce and stir to combine. Set aside to cool.  Do not refrigerate.
  3. For the salad: Combine the duck, lemongrass, lime zest, ginger, grapes, coconut and peanuts in a medium bowl. Add a few spoonfuls of cooled dressing to ensure the mixture is not too wet and toss gently to combine.
  4. Spoon onto betel leaves and roll up with fingers to eat.

Ben’s tips: Adding the ingredients in stages to the mortar and pestle will form a paste more quickly. Roasting the shrimp paste reduces its pungency.

*Note: Australian measurements 1 tablespoon = 20ml are used throughout.