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Spicy fish salad, or laap pla

"Laap", the famous Isan salads, are characterised by a high proportion of meat or fish and the addition of roasted glutinous rice, which gives them a distinctive flavour. We highly recommend this salad, that you will prepare with the fish of your choice. Above in photo, the laap is made with mackerel caught locally. Serves 2.

300 grams fish fillets such as mackerel or sea bass 20 grams uncooked glutinous rice + 1 crumpled kaffir leaf + ½ lemongrass stalk cut in half lengthwise 30 g pea eggplants 30 g shallots, thinly sliced 20 g spring onion, chopped 3 coriander sprigs, chopped 10 g galangal, finely chopped 2 tablespoons fish sauce ¼ teaspoon hot chilli powder 3 tablespoons lime juice 2 teaspoon coconut sugar 2 Chinese cabbage leaves

A dozen mint leaves, roughly chopped (keep a few whole leaves to garnish)

Grill the fish fillets then remove the skin and crumble the flesh.

Dry roast the rice with the kaffir leaf and lemongrass until the rice is golden. Remove the kaffir leaf and lemongrass, transfer the rice to a mortar and pound into powder.

Dry-roast the eggplant for 1 minute and then pound them very lightly in a mortar until they open.

Stir-fry one half of the shallots in a little oil until lightly browned. Drain on kitchen paper and set aside.

Pour all the ingredients, except the fried shallots and cabbage, into a large bowl. Mix well and taste to adjust the seasoning (fish sauce, chili powder, lime, sugar).

Transfer to the cabbage leaves, then sprinkle with fried shallots and a few mint leaves.

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