Vietnamese Grilled Pork Chops (Thit Heo Nuong Xa) with Cold Rice Noodles
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Cook time: 
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Serves: Serves 4-6
 
Ingredients
For the Marinated Pork:
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1½ pounds (680g) thin-cut pork chops, preferably from the blade end, or boneless country-style pork ribs, cut into ¼-inch strips (see note)
  • 3 stalks lemongrass, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced (about 1 ounce; 30g after trimming)
  • 3 tablespoons shallot (from 1 large shallot), roughly chopped (about 5 ounces; 130g)
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, roughly chopped (about ¾ ounce; 20g)
  • ⅓ cup palm or light brown sugar (about 3 ounces; 85g)
  • ⅓ cup (80ml) Asian fish sauce
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon (2g) cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons (30ml) vegetable oil
For Serving:
  • 1 (14-ounce) package rice vermicelli, soaked in hot water, drained, and chilled (according to package directions)
  • ¼ cup (6g) coarsely chopped fresh mint and/or perilla (shiso) leaves
  • ¼ cup (6g) cilantro leaves and tender stems
  • 1 cup thinly sliced Persian cucumbers (about 4 cucumbers; 100g)
  • Pickled Daikon and Carrots
  • ½ cup (3 ounces) crushed unsalted peanuts
  • Nuoc Cham (Vietnamese dipping sauce)
  • Lime wedges
Instructions
  1. For the Pork: In a large zipper-lock bag, combine baking soda with ½ cup (120ml) water and swish until baking soda is dissolved. Add pork, press out air, and seal bag. Refrigerate for 15 minutes. Drain pork, rinse under cold running water, and pat dry. Rinse zipper-lock bag and reserve.
  2. Add lemongrass, shallot, garlic and palm sugar to a food processor and pulse a few times until it becomes a rough paste.Transfer paste to a bowl and whisk in fish sauce, soy sauce, corn starch and vegetable oil. Add pork, turning pieces to coat all surfaces. Transfer pork to a gallon-size zipper-lock bag, press out the air, and seal bag. Marinate at room temperature, turning pork once or twice, for at least 30 minutes or transfer to refrigerator and marinate for up to 12 hours before proceeding.
  3. Light one chimney full of charcoal. When all charcoal is lit and covered with gray ash, pour out and arrange coals on one side of charcoal grate. Set cooking grate in place, cover grill, and allow to preheat for 5 minutes. Alternatively, set half the burners on a gas grill to the highest heat setting, cover, and preheat for 10 minutes. Clean and oil grilling grate. Grill pork directly over high heat, turning frequently and shifting to cooler side of grill if there are excessive flare-ups, until pork is charred and just cooked through, 3 to 4 minutes total.
  4. Assemble serving bowls with noodles, pork, herbs, pickles and peanuts. Drizzle everything with Nước Chấm.
Recipe by Nerds with Knives at https://nerdswithknives.com/vietnamese-grilled-pork-chops/