Larb with Cabbage Cups

Larb with Cabbage Cups
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Laos
 
This is a fun way to eat your cabbage and meat. Great, delicious flavors and who doesn't love eating with their hands!?
Ingredients
  • ½ c. raw skin-on peanuts
  • 2 Tbsp. Driftless Sunflower Oil (or a neutral oil)
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped coarsely
  • 1 lb ground pork, beef or lamb (or combo!)
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 medium onion, thinly sliced into rings
  • 1-4 Cayenne Peppers, deseeded and deveined
  • (***1 was a nice spice for this Midwest girl, add more if you like it spicy***)
  • 2 lemongrass stalk, bottom third only, tough outer layers removed, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbsp. Fresh lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp +1 tsp fish sauce
  • ¼ - ½c. torn mint leaves
  • ¼ head of sweetheart cabbage, halved crossways, leaves separated
  • Cooked short-grain rice and lime wedges for serving
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350. Toast peanuts on rimmed baking sheet, tossing halfway. When nuts are golden brown, 6-8 min, they are done. Let cool. Coarsely chop and set aside.
  2. Heat oil in large saucepan. When oil is shimmering, add garlic.
  3. Cook, smashing garlic down on cloves to break into smaller pieces for about 3 min. Push garlic to side, add ground meat and a pinch of salt. Cook, smashing and stirring meat and garlic together until no clumps remain and meat is no longer pink (about 4 min).
  4. Mix in onion, chiles, lemongrass, lime juice, fish sauce and half of peanuts.
  5. Let larb cool slightly, then stir in mint. Taste and season with more salt if needed.
  6. Transfer larb to a large bowl. Serve with cabbage, rice, lime wedges and remaining peanuts.
  7. ***If you want a crunch, eat cabbage raw. If you want to use the cabbage like a tortilla, blanch the outer leaves to make them more pliable.***