Pork Meatball Banh Mi

Pork Meatball Banh Mi

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Ingredients

For hot chili mayo:
1/3 cup mayonnaise
1 scallion, finely chopped
2 tsp sriracha

For meatballs:
3/4 pound ground pork
generous 3 tbsp fresh Thai basil, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 scallions, finely chopped
generous 2 tsp fish sauce
generous 2 tsp sriracha
generous 2 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp coarse kosher salt

For sandwiches:
1/2 cup carrots, coarsely grated
1/2 cup daikon, peeled and coarsely grated
1 tbsp unseasoned rice vinegar
1 tbsp cup sugar
1/4 tsp coarse kosher salt
2 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp vegetable oil
2 10-inch-long individual baguettes or two 8-inch-long pieces French-bread baguette
Thinly sliced jalapeño chiles
10 large fresh cilantro sprigs

Directions

Stir all ingredients for the hot chili mayo in small bowl. Season with salt. Cover and set aside to hang out in the fridge.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with plastic wrap. Gently mix all meatball ingredients together in large bowl. Do not overmix. Using moistened hands and scant tablespoonful for each, roll meat mixture into 1-inch meatballs. Arrange on baking sheet.

Toss first carrots, daikon, rice vinegar, sugar and salt together in medium non-reactive bowl. Let stand at room temperature 1 hour, tossing occasionally. When ready to serve, drain the pickling liquid.

Preheat oven to 300°F. Heat sesame oil and vegetable oil in large oven-proof skillet over moderately high heat. Add meatballs. Depending on the size of your pan you might be able to cook them all in one batch, or you might need to cook in multiple batches. Either way, don't overcrowd the pan. Saute meatballs until golden brown all over and almost cooked through, turning meatballs often and lowering heat if browning too quickly, about 12-15 minutes. Transfer pan to oven. If you are cooking your meatballs in batches, transfer the meatballs to a rimmed baking sheet and put the baking sheet in the oven and cook remaining meatballs. After 3-5 minutes, the meatballs will be cooked through. Cut one in half to test.

Cut each baguette or baguette piece horizontally in half. Pull out enough bread from each bread half to leave 1/2-inch-thick shell. Spread hot chili mayo over each bread shell. Arrange pickled carrots and daikon and jalapenos in bottom halves. Top with meatballs. Top meatballs with cilantro.
Serve.