kosher salt1 pinch
 ground pepper1 pinch
 garlic2 tsp
pressed or finely chopped
 fresh water chestnuts 1/4 cup
or jicama, finely diced
 fresh shiitake mushrooms3 whole
stemmed and finely chopped
 cornstarch1 tsp
 avocado oil1 tsp
 fish sauce1 tbsp
 boneless pork shoulder12 oz
hand-chopped or coarsely ground
 avocado oil 1/2 tsp
 jarred anchovy fillets3 pieces
or 1 2" x1" x1/2" piece of dried salted mackerel
 fresh ginger1 piece
2" x 1/2", peeled and finely julienned
 avocado oil1 1/2 tsp
 steamed rice
preferably brown
 yank sing chili sauce


Kick off the rice cooker.
Preheat the steamer. Fill the wok or pot with just enough water so that it doesn't touch the bottom of the steamer. Set the steamer over the pot. Cover it, then bring the water to a boil over high heat.
Process the garlic, water chestnuts, and mushrooms. Hand-chop the pork if needed.
Combine the salt, pepper, garlic, water chestnuts, mushrooms, cornstarch, oil, fish sauce, and pork. Mix to evenly distribute the ingredients. We like to use gloved hands for this task.
Oil the rimmed heatproof plate. Press the pork mixture into the plate and shape it into a thin, rustic patty. (Gloved hands come in handy for this step too!) Set the salty fish in the center, then sprinkle the ginger and oil over it.
Steam the dish, covered, for 15-20 minutes until the pork is cooked through.
With the help of a steel gripper, transfer the dish to the table. Serve and enjoy immediately with steamed rice and Yank Sing's chili sauce (optional).

We sometimes chop up the leftovers and freeze them into cubes to pack for our daughter's lunches. Be sure to spoon the sauce on top of the chopped cubes as it will help fill in air gaps and minimize freezer burn.


Charles Phan's Vietnamese Home Cooking