Delicious turmeric and ginger spiced pork tenderloin skewers with an amazing Thai Basil dipping sauce that will tantalize your sweet, sour, salty and spicy taste buds.
You are going to just love this dish as it is vibrant in taste, makes great use of the “other white meat” and is so simple to prepare. If you are looking for a fun and delicious way to celebrate the last upcoming holiday of the grilling season, Labor Day, you are sorted.
The secret for success of this recipe is in the marinade. If you can let your pork tenderloin slices marinade in the bath of turmeric, ginger, onion, garlic, coconut oil and fish sauce over night the more tender, juicy and tasty your skewers will be. Turmeric, ginger, onion and garlic are all warming spices and pair nicely with the Thai basil and cilantro lime dipping sauce.
If you do not have turmeric in your spice drawer you need to get that sorted as soon as possible as you are missing out on so many delicious dishes but also many positive therapeutic effects. Turmeric is an anti-inflammatory, high in antioxidants and lowers your risk of heart disease. However my favourite reason for using turmeric is the beautiful bright yellow-orange colour it gives to curries and many dishes it is in.
However, there is one small warning when using turmeric is it can stains clothes, kitchen counters, finger nails and even utensils if you do not clean them right away. I don’t normally wear an apron in the kitchen but when I am cooking with turmeric, I do. So how do you get turmeric off the countertop and clothes… bleach is the answer to that one. I use CIF countertop cleaner, I don’t know if you have that where you live or not…but that works great. I use fresh turmeric and ginger in the recipe. Heck why not, I do live in Asia. Dried ground turmeric and ginger work just fine in this recipe too.
I use a food processor to whiz up the delicious onions, ginger, turmeric, garlic, coconut oil and fish sauce and it is a beautiful vibrant yellow. If you do not have a food processor, you can use a mortar and pestle or just chop up the ingredients finely and mix.
Now on to this delightful Thai basil dipping sauce. Thai basil is just a beautiful herb and it has an anise like scent. However, I know this herb is difficult to come by anywhere else, if you live outside of Asia, so just swap out for just ordinary basil and this dipping sauce is just as beautiful. Thailand flavours always hold the balance of sweet, sour, savoury and spicy. The only way you know if you hit the balance correctly, is to taste for yourself. Some people like it more spicy, some more sweet and some more sour or salty. I only like mine slightly spicy but my boys love it super spicy so I make a mild and a spicy version for the table.
You can make this sauce diabetic friendly by exchanging out brown sugar with a sugar alternative. If you need to watch your sodium intake or are on a cardiac friendly diet or Paleo diet, hold the fish sauce in the marinade and instead use a little Mrs. Dash while grilling or sprinkle with some dried chili in the grilling process. If you need to follow a low sodium diet, then also skip the fish sauce in the Thai basil dipping sauce as it is high in sodium. Instead add some aromatics like minced ginger, onion or extra chili.
I just cannot believe how fast this summer flew by. My youngest boy just came back from a 30 day Alaskan Mountaineering outdoors NOLS (National Outdoor Leadership School) adventure. He left a boy and came back a man with loads more experience in wilderness first aid, wilderness survival, leaving no trace behind and how to deal with bear encounters… Next week he will be back in school and I will be having loads of recipes to help you with making those dreaded school lunches and healthy and nutritious meals you can get on your table in less than 30 minutes… Let the insanity begin!!!
Delicious turmeric and ginger spiced pork tenderloins skewers with an amazing Thai Basil dipping sauce that will tantalise your sweet, sour, salty and spicy tastebuds.
- turmeric - 1.5 inch knob peeled and sliced (or 1 heaping teaspoon ground dried turmeric)
- ginger - 1 inch knob peeled and sliced (or 1 teaspoon ground dried ginger)
- onion - 1 small onion or about 3/4 cup chopped (can exchange with shallots, if you like)
- garlic - 2 cloves peeled and bashed
- fish sauce - 1/4 cup
- coconut oil - 2 tablespoons
- pork tenderloin - 1.5 pounds cut into slices about 1/4 inch thick (or can use other cuts of pork that you wish)
- wooden skewers - 10-12
- Thai Basil Dipping Sauce
- Thai holy basil (holy basil) - 1 tablespoon chopped
- cilantro (coriander) - 1 tablespoon chopped
- fish sauce - 2 tablespoons
- sugar or sugar alternative - 2 teaspoons (brown sugar or sugar alternative if diabetic)
- lime juice - 4 tablespoons
- garlic - 1 minced clove
- chili - to taste (fresh bird chilis pack their punch in heat so I used a milder red Chinese chili)
Step 1: Marinate the pork: In a food processor, add turmeric, ginger, onion, garlic, fish sauce and coconut oil. Blend well. (If you do not have a food processor you can do this in a mortar and pestle or just chop up finely instead) In a sealable baggie or tupperware add your sliced pork tenderloins pieces and add the turmeric marinade and mix well, cover and place in the refrigerator for up to overnight or at least one hour marinade time.
Step 2: Make Thai Basil Dipping Sauce: In a small bowl add chopped Thai basil (or regular basil), chopped cilantro, fish sauce, brown sugar or sugar alternative, lime juice, garlic and chili to taste. Set Aside or place in refrigerator up to 24 hours in advance.
Step 3: Soak your wooden skewers for at least 1/2 hour. Skewer the pork lengthwise like you are using the wooden skewer to sew on the pork. Spread the pork slices flat so they are not overlapping. Depending on the size of your skewer and pork slices, maybe only 2 slices of pork tenderloin per skewer.
Step 4: Prepare and oil your grill and preheat. Cook your turmeric pork skewers for about 3 minutes on each side until nicely charred and cooked through.
Step 5: Serve your delicious Turmeric Pork skewers & Thai Basil Dipping Sauce as a delicious healthy meal. Enjoy!