Thai-style Spicy Pork and Hydroponic Lettuces

by Chef


For the pork marinade:

2 pounds pork tenderloin

6 tablespoons olive oil

1 teaspoon sesame seed oil

4 tablespoons seasoned rice wine vinegar

1 tablespoon fresh-grated ginger

1 tablespoon Thai fish sauce

1 tablespoon sambal oelek (red chili paste)

6 thin-sliced garlic cloves


For the salad:

2 heads baby bok choy (optional)

1 head leafy red or green oak leaf lettuce, all leaves

1 head spicy mustard, all leaves

1 head red pak choy, all leaves

2 tomatoes cut into thin wedges

1 thinly sliced cucumber

1 thinly sliced small red onion

1 bunch fresh spearmint, chopped

Extra olive oil for grilling


For the salad dressing:

1/8 cup olive oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1/4 cup loosely packed small-chopped cilantro leaves

1/2 teaspoon sesame oil

2 tablespoons light soy sauce

1-2 tablespoons chopped lemon grass

1 minced Thai chili or hot pepper (add seeds for additional heat)

1 tablespoon light brown sugar

1 teaspoon Thai fish sauce

Dash freshly ground black pepper


For the garnish:

6 wonton wrappers

1 ounce local radish microgreens


For the pork marinade: Place marinade ingredients in a mixing bowl, whisk together and then pour over pork. Let marinade 2 hours in the refrigerator. Turn once after the first hour.

For the salad dressing: Place dressing ingredients in a mixing bowl, whisk together, making sure sugar is dissolved. Set aside.

For the wontons: Preheat the fryer to 350°F. Cut wontons into strips, deep fry 1 to 2 minutes until golden brown, place onto paper towel to drain and season with salt and pepper.

To assemble: Preheat the grill to medium-high. Brush bok choy heads with olive oil, place over medium-high heat to char all over and wilt the bok choy 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to cutting board, discard stem and cut leaves into medium-size pieces.

Prepare grill grate surface for the pork tenderloin. Dip a used kitchen towel into oil and rub over grill grates. Grill pork on all sides, and cook until internal temperature reaches 160°F, 8 to 10 minutes on each side. Remove from heat, place on cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing. To slice, position knife perpendicular to the pork and make straight cuts into very thin slices.

Transfer the meat into a large mixing bowl and toss with the cut bok choy, oak leaf lettuce, spicy mustards, red pak choy, tomatoes, cucumber, onions, and chopped mint. Spoon over dressing and toss gently. Divide salad onto individual plates or a platter. Garnish with wonton crisps and microgreens.