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Cushion cover (used as placemat), $14.95, at Morningstar Trading Co. Ltd.

BARRY & KIRN

This dip can be served either warm or at room temperature with an assortment of blanched vegetables including green beans, squash, cabbage and chayote.

Nam prik ong

6 dried bird’s eye chilies

2 dried guajillo chilies, deseeded

6 garlic cloves

5 small red Asian shallots, peeled and roughly chopped

2 tbsp Gapi fermented shrimp paste (if you cannot find this, you will need to add more fish sauce to the recipe)

4 tbsp vegetable oil

½lb ground pork

½lb cherry tomatoes, washed

4 tbsp fish sauce

2 tsp of palm sugar (ordinary sugar can be substituted)

2 tsp fresh lime juice

Method

Boil 1 cup of water in a kettle or pan. Break guajillos and bird’s eye chilies up into a heatproof container. Pour the hot water over top. When the chilies are soft and pliable (about 5 minutes), drain thoroughly and place in a mortar and pestle or small food processor. Add the garlic, shallots and shrimp paste. Pound or process into a rough paste.

Place a pan over medium heat and add the vegetable oil. Add the chili paste to the oil and gently fry, stirring constantly. When the paste is fragrant and has lost the raw smell of the garlic and shallots (about 5 to 10 minutes), add the ground pork.

Fry the pork until there is no pink left. Add the tomatoes, fish sauce and palm sugar. Simmer for 5 to 10 minutes until most of the liquid has been cooked out and you are left with something resembling a thick, slightly oily bolognese sauce. Add the lime juice and adjust seasoning to your liking.

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