This months Random Recipe #36 – New Year, New Book was set as always by Belleau Kitchen, was actually chosen by B – he had no idea what he was doing it for at the time but I gave him the most recent cookbook I was given (though admittedly was a slight cheat as I was given this particular book and the ‘Reggae Reggae’ cookbook together but nothing really appealed in there when I had previously looked!) I just simply handed the book over and told him to flick it open to a recipe – and with a slight sigh of relief Thai Pork with Coconut Coriander Sauce was read out! If you just noticed the deliberate change from the title to the reference above then well done – we did switch the meat from Pork to Turkey, mainly as I had bought reduced some Turkey breast steaks, and as the recipe called originally for Pork Fillet which is equally pretty lean it made an excellent and economical substitute!

So the book in question this month … its Rachel’s Favourite Food at Home (by Rachel Allen), and the Thai Pork is also the first recipe cooked from it. Dad gave me the book late last year after managing to source it for I think something like a measly 99p brand new in a clearance shop! I do like a bargain but really lack bookshelf space now (in fact a boxful linger sadly in the loft softly calling at night..either that or we’ve got pigeons!) and now I’ve actually had a proper look through it there are some rather tasty looking recipes including some Fruity Breakfast Muffins that the page just opened on as I got the book out to type it up!
This also reminded me once again (and the second time that week oops) to READ A RECIPE FROM START TO FINISH as we completely cacked up the timings and wasted precious time and energy making it! Dinner was finally served about 9pm! I have written the recipe out to make it easier for those with similar brain programming to me!
Many moons back I attended evening classes for a Thai Cookery course, it had been initially advertised in the local paper as South East Asian Cookery but I think Thai food was becoming popular and there must have been requests made and it was changed to just Thai cookery. To this day ashamedly I note that I have never looked up the difference! I am no expert by any means on Thai cusine and not really sure how authentic this is either but it has all the elements of a Thai meal, and despite our attempts to ruin it piece by piece, it actually turned out pretty tasty and can see us definitely making again.
The original recipe serves a whopping 10-12 so I have scaled it down somewhat to suit 2-3 adults. I also opted for using Gourmet Garden’s fresh herb and spice pastes as er its easier and I had them in! I left out the lemon zest as I er forgot to buy one. I’ve never used lemon zest in Thai recipes before either so wasn’t too concerned missing it out!
400g Turkey breast, into 1x2cm chunks
2tbsp fresh coriander leaves chopped up
3 spring onions, roughly chopped
½ tbsp ginger paste
2 cloves garlic
Squeeze of lemon juice (I use bottled)
½ tps red chilli paste
½ tbsp lemongrass paste
1 heaped tbsp brown sugar
1 1/2 tbsp soy sauce
1 1/2 tbsp Nam Pla (fish sauce)
1 1/2 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tin coconut milk (in hindsight next time use ¾ tin)
2 tsp Nam Pla
3 tsp lemon juice
1 tbsp fresh coriander leaves and stalks roughly chopped
S&p to taste
Some of the ingredients!


This is the bit I we-wrote completely – there are two options for making the marinade– option one is if you have a liquidizer or similar gadget. Option two is if you only have a food processor (I don’t this is how book states it?!)
Option one – whack all the marinade ingredients together in a liquidizer till nicely combined, mix with the Turkey and reserve for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
Option two – In the food processor add the coriander, spring onions, ginger, garlic, lemongrass, chilli and lemon juice, blitz and combine with the remaining marinade ingredients mix with the Turkey and reserve for at least 30 minutes or overnight.
Mmm soo good!
1) Heat a large frying pan until very hot (but not so hot the alarm goes ping ping ping) and lift the turkey bits out of the marinade (a slotted spoon in great here) and fry in a single layer for about 2 minutes, turn over and cook through – should be at the most 3-4 minutes and lovely and sticky and your kitchen smells fab. Keep warm

2) Meanwhile place the leftover marinade in a small pan and bring to the boil uncovered, and boil until slightly thickened, then add the sauce ingredients. (We were a little impatient having mis-read original instructions and added cornflour shh!)  It may well not need much seasoning – the soy and nam pla are quite salty on their own so do check first!

3) Serve the cooked turkey on top of rice if desired and lather a little sauce over the top or on the side. We actually poured most of the sauce back over the turkey to warm through! It most likely lost some marks at this point in the looks department but it tasted great! As you can see we didn’t have rice – I used up some leftover chapati’s and made a dry sweet potato curry on the side. Garnish with a little extra corinader and spring onions to hide the dodgy colour if you like.

No stake in the beauty contest but wins on taste! 

By andrei