Marinated Pork Fillet with Peanut Sauce

A rich sauce of coconut milk, sweet-sour tamarind, aromatic lemon grass and fiery chillies makes a thick cloak for David Massey's seared pork
By David Massey
Marinated Pork Fillet with Peanut Sauce
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 50 minutes
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes plus marinating and steeping time
  • Effort: medium


For the pork

  • 1 tbsp sesame oil
  • 150 ml sweet soy sauce
  • 75 ml groundnut oil, plus extra for frying
  • 1 tsp chilli oil
  • 1.5 kg pork fillet, cut into 6 portions

For the sauce

  • 500 g peanuts
  • 8 red shallots, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 stalks lemongrass, peeled and chopped
  • 5 red chillies, chopped
  • 4 lime leaves, shredded
  • 30 g palm sugar
  • 450 ml tamarind water
  • 1 litres unsweetened coconut milk
  • 275 ml sweet soy sauce

To serve

  • boiled rice
  • steamed bok choy
  • coriander leaves
  • chillies, shredded finely

Tips and Suggestions

To make tamarind water, allow 8 tablespoons of tamarind pulp or concentrate to steep in 450ml hot water for 20-30 minutes, mashing the tamarind occasionally with a fork to help it dissolve. Press the mixture through a sieve to remove any stones or insoluble fibres and give 450ml of tamarind-flavoured water.


1. Combine the sesame oil, thick sweet soy sauce, groundnut oil and chilli oil in a large mixing bowl. Add the pork, coat well and place in the refrigerator to marinate overnight (or else for as long as possible before cooking).

2. To make the sauce, heat the 2 tablespoons of groundnut oil in a pan and add the peanuts and fry until golden brown. Remove from the pan and set aside to drain on kitchen paper.

3. When cool place the nuts in a food processor and pulse until coarse. Remove from the processor and set aside.

4. Put the shallots, garlic, lemon grass, chillies, and lime leaves in the processor with 50ml water and blend to a paste. Heat a little of groundnut oil in a saucepan and fry the paste for 10 minutes, stirring to prevent burning.

5. Add the peanuts, palm sugar, tamarind water and coconut milk, stirring all the time until the mixture starts to thicken, about 15 minutes. Add the soy sauce and set aside.

6. Place the marinated pieces of pork in a hot frying pan greased with a little groundnut oil. Cook for 5 minutes on each side, turning regularly, then remove the pork from the pan and set aside to rest.

7. To serve, slice the pork and arrange it over the rice and bok choy. Spoon over the sauce. Garnish with the coriander and chilli strips and serve.

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