Ua Sai Khai (Stuffed Lemongrass)


4 cloves garlic, minced
6 green onions, chopped
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1 kaffir lime leaf, fine chiffonade
1 tsp.  sea salt
8 oz. tofu, drained and cubed
10-12 thick stalks lemongrass
2 eggs, beaten
oil, for deep frying


Brown tofu in a pan, season with 1 tsp. soy sauce and let cool. Crumble into very small bits and place in a mortar or food processor with the garlic, green onion, cilantro, lime leaf, and salt. Blend until all ingredients are incorporated. Starting about 1/2" (1cm) from the base, make a 2" (5cm) slice that goes all the way through the lemongrass, straight up the stalk. Rotate the lemongrass 1/4 turn and repeat. You should now be able to make a "cage" out of the bottom of the lemongrass by pushing it down slightly. Fill this "space" with a couple of spoonfuls of the tofu mixture, enclosing the mixture within the lemongrass "netting". Coat each piece of stuffed lemongrass in beaten egg and deep fry in a wok until browned. 

{If you don't like Tofu then either or both pork and shrimp works well. Mince the meats and add a little bit of the beaten egg to the mixture.}