I remember my mum making this for her Thai son-in-law when he came to visit after the birth of his son. And I remember just how delicious they were too. But it’s taken me over a year to make them for myself (and my boyfriend ;-)). And OMG how awesome they are! Made with quails eggs, they make a lovely canape; or else serve 3-4 per person as a starter with a selection of other yummy Thai bites.
For 12 portions you need:
12 leaves from little gem lettuces, washed and dried.
For the eggs:
12 quails eggs
vegetable oil for deep frying
For the topping:
6 shallots, sliced thinly
6 garlic cloves, sliced thinly
1 tbsp roughly chopped fresh coriander
For the sauce:
2/3 Barts spice jar of tamarind paste
2 inch chunk of ginger, finely grated
2 thai chillies, sliced thinly
2 tbsp light soya sauce
1 tsp ground cumin
Begin by mixing everything together for the sauce. Leave to one side to allow the flavours to develop whilst you do the other stages.
Semi hard boil the quails eggs in simmering water for 3-4 mins. Refresh in cold water and then *carefully* peel the shells away (if the eggs are very fresh this will be tricky so take your time!).
Heat vegetable oil in a shallow pan to a depth of about 2cms. Deep fry the shallots and garlic and drain on kitchen paper. Repeat with the eggs, frying until they become crispy and golden brown all over.
Place the lettuce leaves on a serving dish and place a dessertspoonful of the sauce in each one. Top with an egg and then the shallots and garlic. Finish with some fresh coriander. Sigh in pleasure as you eat. Totally and utterly delicious!