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Image / Editorial

The Best of Saba

by Bill O'Sullivan
07th Feb 2014

They don’t really need more good press but this is worth noting so here goes. Partnering with Erika Doolan of Nutrition Ireland, Saba have launched their new look menu. Redesigned in part because of the new calorie count law that will go into effect shortly, Saba also took this opportunity to look into how people actually think of their food and the way they eat out. They’ve introduced Saba Slim and Saba Light as well as putting forward options for coeliacs and a Paleo friendly option. Always ahead of the curve, the Saba menu maintains all its Thai and Vietnamese authenticity with chef Taweesak Trakoolwattan at the helm. We sampled some of the items on the redesigned menu and can report they are light, flavoursome and near perfect. So we take this occasion to share one of our faves from the Saba Cook Book?saba

Mieng Kam

Smoked Trout on Betel Leaves

125g smoked trout fillet, skin off, diced 1 cm pieces

29 betel leaves

75g toasted coconut,

75g unsalted, roasted, crushed peanuts

2 dsp ginger, finely diced

1 lime, peeled and finely diced

3 bird’s eye chillies, finely chopped

For the sauce

4dsp fish sauce

60g palm sugar

1/2 dsp Thai shrimp paste

2dsp tamarind juice

1 stalk lemongrass, chopped

1 dsp galangal, chopped

To make the sauce, mix all the sauce ingredients in a saucepan. Cook for a few minutes gently on a low heat, stirring continuously until the palm sugar has dissolved and the sauce has thickened slightly.

Once the sauce is ready, take it off the heat and pour it through a sieve to remove the lemongrass and galangal.

Allow to cool.

To make toasted coconut, take a brown-shelled coconut, crack it and, using a small, sharp knife, cut off the flesh and slice into fine pieces. Place them on a baking sheet and put in the oven at 150?C/Gas Mark 2 until golden. You can use desiccated coconut, but fresh coconut is much tastier.

To prepare the filling, using a spoon, lightly mix together the prepared coconut, peanuts, shallots, ginger, lime, bird’s eye chillies and smoked trout and a little of the sauce to bind the ingredients together.

To serve, lay out the betel leaves and, using a spoon, divide the mixture between the leaves and top with a little more of the sauce. They can be served flat on a dish, or they can be rolled so that the betel leaves holds the mixture – easier to eat!

Taken from The Saba Cook Book: Profits go to the Crumlin’s Children’s hospital.

Roisin Agnew @Roxeenna