Monday, July 8, 2013

Yum Moo Yor / Vietnamese Pork Loaf Spicy Salad

I have a bad habit, and I need to confess. I love to eat………. too much! 

Here’s another popular Thai spicy salad dish I like to eat, especially when a group of friends get together for the evening chat and some drinks.    It’s almost like a must-have dish, along with Yum Woon Sen, to get the party started.    Oh geeez…now I’m feeling homesick!

When it comes to Thai salad, or “yum” (the word says it all…yummmm!!!), it usually makes with spicy dressing that include these basic ingredients – fish sauce, lime juice, sugar, garlic and Thai chili.   The level of spiciness, of course, depends on how each person is preferred. Just like other Thai salad, the dressing is based on these flavors – salty, sweet, sour, and spicy.   That’s it. If you feel uncomfortable using fish sauce, sea salt can absolutely be substituted.  

 Vietnamese steamed pork loaf, or Moo-Yor as Thais called it, can be purchased at most Asian supermarkets.  And the name already tells the hint of its origin, Vietnam.  Since Thailand and Vietnam are neighbor countries, Thai people have come to love this tasty pork loaf and incorporated it in many dishes such as this one.   The pork loaf is basically seasoned finely ground pork usually wrapped tightly with layers of banana leaf and then steamed.   Finely sliced and cooked pork skins are sometimes mixed into the pork loaf for the texture. And oh, you should know how much I love pork skins in my food. It give a “bite and texture” that makes the food so much more fun to eat.  Seriously!
The pork loaf is already cooked and ready to eat when bought from store. It’s widely used in noodle soup by slicing into strips along with other meats or meatballs.

What you need:   for 2-4 people

For salad:
8 oz. Cooked Vietnamese pork loaf, quartered and thinly sliced
1/2 cup white onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup celery, thinly sliced
1/4 cup celery leaves or cilantro leaves, chopped
2 medium Persian cucumber, cut half lengthwise and sliced
1 large tomato, cut into wedge
5 small yellow vine tomatoes, halved – optional


For dressing:
5-7 Thai red chili, crushed or use 2-3 tbsp. Asian chili garlic sauce (depends on your preferred spiciness)
3 cloves garlic, finely minced or crushed together with chili
4 tbsp. fish sauce
4 tbsp. lime juice
1 tbsp. sugar

How to:

- fill water in the medium pot to boil, and add cooked Vietnamese pork loaf just to heat through for just 30 seconds.
- combine the entire ingredients for the salad in a large bowl
- in another medium bowl, whisk together the entire ingredients for the dressing until the sugar is dissolved and pour the dressing into the salad bowl and gently toss together to mix well. 
- the salad can be serve immediately; however, if lets it sit for 5 minutes or longer in the fridge until it’s ready to be served, it will definitely taste a lot better.


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