(adapted from Hot Sour Salty Sweet by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid; serves 4)
For the Salad:
- 2 eggs, hardboiled
- 1 cup cilantro leaves, washed and dried
- 1 cup flat parsley leaves, washed and dried
- washed and dried mixed winter greens or lettuce, a large handful per serving
- 1 bunch scallions or 2 spring Vidalia onions
for the dressing:
- juice of 1 large lime
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce or soy sauce
- 1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes or Sriracha sauce (or to taste)
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons oil, such as grape seed
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 1/2 pound ground pork
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/3 cup cider
- 1/2 cup unsalted or lightly salted peanuts (not dry roasted)
Cut the hardboiled eggs in half and remove the yolks. Chop the whites into slices or chunks. Mash the yolks in a small bowl.
Remove the root ends and any damaged leaves from the scallions or onions. For scallions, chop them into thin ringlets, using both the white and green parts. If using onions, slice them the long way into quarters, then cut them into thin slices in the other direction, using both the white and green parts. You should wind up with about 1 cup of chopped scallions or onions.
Toss together the cilantro, parsley, scallions or onions and greens or lettuce and divide between 4 plates. Set aside.
Whisk together the lime juice, 1/3 of the minced garlic, the fish or soy sauce, and the dried pepper flakes or Sriracha sauce. Set aside.
Heat a wok or large skillet then add the oil. Add the remaining garlic and the ginger and cook for about 1 minute. Add the pork and cook until it loses its pink color. Add the sugar and cook for about a minute. Add the water and when it is boiling, stir in the mashed egg yolks. Stir in the cider vinegar and cook for a minute or so, then remove from the heat.
Pour some of the hot pork sauce over each plate of greens, then some of the lime juice mixture. Sprinkle some of the chopped egg whites and peanuts over each salad. Serve immediately.