My ultimate little Asian starter has to be these Pork Lettuce Cups, which are full of fantastic aromatic flavours.


  • 1 tblsp sunflower oil
  • 250 g lean pork mince
  • 3 garlic cloves (peeled and finely chopped)
  • 1 red chilli (de-seeded and finely chopped)
  • 1 tblsp fish sauce (nampla)
  • 1 tblsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 tblsp caster sugar
  • 5 spring onions (finely chopped)
  • 8 fresh mint leaves (finely chopped)
  • juice of 1 lime
  • to serve:
  • 2 baby gem lettuces (separated into leaves)
  • thai sweet chilli sauce


  • Heat the sunflower oil in a large frying pan over a high heat, add the pork mince and fry for 2-3 minutes or until the mince is tender, breaking the mince up with a spoon as it cooks. Add the garlic and chilli and fry for a further minute.
  • Add the fish sauce, soy sauce and sugar and stir through, frying for another minute until you have a good colour on the meat.
  • Finally add half the spring onions, mint and the lime juice and fry for 1-2 minutes until the spring onions are just tender.
  • Remove from the heat and allow to cool until just warm.
  • Place 1 heaped tablespoon of the aromatic pork in each baby gem lettuce leaf, top with a drizzle of Thai sweet chilli sauce and a garnish with the remaining spring onions and mint.