Pork & Noodle Balls with Chilli Sauce

I couldn’t stop eating these. I made them for a party yet ate most of them before the guests could get a look in. Their visual appearance is only 20% of their appeal, especially if you’re greedy, like me.

For the noodle balls

250g Hokkien noodles
300g pork mince
6 spring onions (very finely chopped)
2 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
1/3 cup fresh coriander (finely chopped)
1 tablespoon fish sauce
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
1 1/2 tablespoons lime juice
oil (for frying)

Dipping Sauce
2 fresh red chillies
2 teaspoons mirin
2 teaspoons freshly grated ginger
1/2 cup light soy sauce

Place the noodles in a bowl and cover with boiling water – leave for 1-2 minutes and drain and dry on paper towels. Chop the noodles roughly and add to a large bowl.
Add the pork, spring onions, garlic, coriander, fish sauce, oyster sauce and lime and combine thoroughly with your hands.
Roll out 1 tablespoon of the mixture into a ball and place on a plate – repeat with the rest of the mixture. You should make about 30. Leave the balls covered in the fridge for about 1 hour.
Heat about 10cm oil in a wok or pan until hot (a cube of bread will fizz to the surface immediately when the oil is hot enough). Drop in the balls one by one in batches and cook for about 2-3 minutes each or until golden. Remove with a slotted spoon and drain on peper towels.

Dipping sauce:
Combine the chillies, sesame oil, mirin and soy sauce in a bowl.

Serve the pork balls on a bed of lettuce with the chilli sauce on the side.

You can make these well in advance and heat up in the oven. Just heat the oven to 175ºC and leave to cook for 15-20 minutes – until piping hot. You can even freeze them, in which case cook from frozen for 25-35 minutes at 175ºC turning ocasionally.

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