There's a reason Saveur devoted a whole article in a recent issue to satays, that "adaptable combination of skewers, meat, and heat." During grilling season, the possibilities for flavor when it comes to satays (and their likely ancestor, the kebab) are wide. Burgers and the like are fun and all, but a little bit of creativity can lead to something as delicious as this.
These skewers come via Jean-Georges Vongerichten, and as you'd expect with his recipes, the flavors are complex but expertly blended. The bright sweetness of lemongrass leads, followed by all kinds of complex pungency from the fish and oyster sauces, rounded out with a little sugar, shallot, and toasted sesame seeds. It's a remarkable marinade. The only thing missing was heat, so if you wanted to punch it up, a minced red chile wouldn't be out of place.
- 3 tablespoons canola oil
- 2 tablespoons oyster sauce
- 2 tablespoons minced lemongrass
- 2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
- 1 tablespoons fish sauce
- 1 teaspoon sugar
- 2 small shallots, minced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 5 ounces pork shoulder chunks, pounded into 1-inch wide by 1/4-inch thick slices
In a small food processor, process all ingredients except the pork until smooth. Transfer mixture to a bowl, add pork pieces, and toss to coat well. Marinate at least 30 minutes at room temperature, or refrigerate for longer (preparing marinade in the morning is a great solution).
Prepare a hot grill and soak skewers in water to inhibit burning. Thread pork onto skewers and grill, turning once, until lightly charred but still juicy, about 5 minutes. Serve immediately.