Aunty 5’s rice cakes with tiger prawns and pork floss

AT A GLANCE

  • Serves 8 people

  • 125 gm rice flour (see note)
  • 60 gm wheat starch (see note)
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 4 cooked tiger prawns, halved lengthways
  • 100 gm pork floss (see note)
  • 1 tbsp roasted peanuts, crushed
  • 2 birdseye chillies (or to taste), thinly sliced
  • 2 spring onions, thinly sliced on an angle
  •  
  • Garlic oil
  • 125 ml (½ cup) vegetable oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  •  
  • Spring onion oil
  • 125 ml (½ cup) vegetable oil
  • 5 spring onions, coarsely chopped
  •  
  • Nuoc cham
  • 60 ml (¼ cup) each fish sauce and rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp white sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 birdseye chilli (or to taste), thinly sliced
  • 2 tbsp lime juice, or to taste
01   For garlic oil, warm oil and garlic in a saucepan over medium heat to infuse flavours (2 minutes). Set aside to cool, then refrigerate for flavours to develop (overnight). Strain (discard solids) and refrigerate until required.
02   For spring onion oil, warm oil and onion in a saucepan over medium heat to infuse flavours (2 minutes). Set aside to cool, strain (discard solids) and refrigerate until required.
03   For nuoc cham, combine fish sauce, vinegar, sugar and 125ml warm water in a saucepan over medium heat, stir to dissolve sugar, bring to just below boiling point and set aside to cool. Add garlic, chilli and lime juice, adjust seasoning to taste, stir to combine and refrigerate until required. Makes about 250ml.
04   Whisk flour, wheat starch, 50ml garlic oil, 500ml water and 1 tsp salt in a saucepan, then stir continuously over low heat until thick and glue-like (4-5 minutes). Spoon into a 30cm x 20cm x 3.5cm-deep baking tray, press evenly with wet hands, place tray in a large steamer over simmering water, steam until firm to touch (15-20 minutes) and set aside to cool. Slice into 2cm cubes with a knife dusted in rice flour and set aside on a tray lined with baking paper.
05   Heat 60ml garlic oil in a large frying pan over high heat, add garlic and fry rice cakes in batches until golden and slightly crisp (2-3 minutes; be careful, hot oil will spit). Remove with a slotted spoon, arrange on a plate, top with prawns, pork floss, peanuts, chilli and onion, drizzle with a little nuoc cham and spring onion oil and serve.
Note Rice flour, wheat starch and pork floss are available from select Asian grocers.

This recipe is from the December 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.
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