recipes

Northern Thai Sausage (ไส้อั่ว Sai ua)

Northern Thai sausage, Sai ua, is an iconic dish from Northern part of Thailand, also found in northeastern Burma. It may not be as well known as Tom Yum and Pad Thai, but it remains one of my favourite dishes to order from a Thai restaurant. 

Sai Ua from Pai Toronto

Sai ua normally consists of minced pork mixed with aromatic spices, herbs and curry paste. I find sai ua quite unique with all the interesting flavors combined together. With this simple recipe, you will make sai ua that tastes very similar to the ones served at Thai restaurants!

Ingredients, skinless version (serves 2-4):
  • 250 ground meat
  • 2-3 tsb Thai curry paste
  • 4-5 kaffir lime leaves
  • 1-2 lemongrass sticks
  • 2 tsb fish sauce
  • 1-2 tsb soy sauce
  • 2-3 small red chilies
  • 2-4 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 onion
  • 2-3 spring onions
  • 1tsb sugar
Notes:
  • Meat: ground pork is recommended. I used 1/2 chicken breast to make it healthier, but pork sausages have better textures.
  • Curry: red curry is normally used, green curry works too
  • If you cannot find kaffir lime leaves, replace them with zests of 1-2 limes
  • Only use the fatter half of lemongrass stick
Instructions:

1: Combine all the ingredients except ground meat in a food processor / blender, process until they become a paste (not very fine, but no big chunks left)

2: Combine and mix ground meat and the paste, stir in the same direction

3: Place a portion of meat filling in your hand, roll into a sausage shape. Cover sausages with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. I made 3 with the recipe.

4: Oven baking method: Transfer sausages to a greased baking rack, cook for 20 min at 190 C (adjust time according to size of sausages). Place a baking sheet below the sausages, so that meat juice won’t damage the oven.

Pan fry method: heat oil in a non-stick pan. Fry the sausages over medium-low heat until cooked through.

Let cool for about 5 min before slicing the sausages. Serve with refreshing vegetables such as cucumber, cabbage, carrots. Northern Thai sausage is usually treated as an appetizer, but I think it can be a nice main dish as well.

You can also enjoy sai ua with a bowl of steamed rice/ sticky rice.

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