Friday, November 8, 2013

Recipe: Thai appetizer, Galloping Horses (Ma Haw ม้าห้อ)

Ma haw or ma hor ม้าห้อ, literally translated to Galloping Horses is a popular Thai appetizer and is said to be named in honour of King Rama VII's excellent horsemanship. The sweet and sticky caramelised minced pork is topped on segments of fresh pineapple or tangerine and garnished with a coriander leaf and thinly sliced red chilli.

Galloping Horses

It is great as finger food at parties, as you can just lift a piece off the plate and pop the bite-size hors d'oeuvres into the mouth. At our bloggers gathering a few months ago, this was what I made. I cooked the pork at home, and assembled it at the party.

I particular like how attractive and colorful it looks on the plate - a multitude of colours from the pork, pineapple, coriander and chilli. In Thai cuisine, a balance of flavours (sweet,sour, salty and spicy) is important and this dish definitely delivers. Use good-quality pineapple (not overly ripe which is both sweet and slightly tart in taste) for this dish to shine. The minced pork plus peanuts contributes to the sweet and salty element and the chillies is added for the spicy factor.

Beautiful colours, and lots of different textures and tastes

Galloping Horses  (Ma Haw ม้าห้อ)
Recipe by Baby Sumo, adapted from A Little Taste of Thailand
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Cooking time: 10-12 minutes
Makes 25

2 tbsp cooking oil
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
225g minced (ground) pork
2 tbsp light soy sauce
3 tbsp palm sugar (gula melaka)
1 spring onion (white parts only), finely sliced
1/2 tbsp fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
25g unsalted cooked peanuts, skin removed and roughly ground
A pinch of ground white pepper
1 pineapple

To garnish
20 coriander leaves
1 red chilli, very finely sliced

1. Peel the pineapple, then cut into rounds with 1.5cm thickness. Cut each round into quarters - cut off the core and discard as it can be tough. You should get about 25 pieces of pineapple.

2. Heat oil in a wok over medium high heat, then add the garlic and cook for 1 1/2 minutes, until lightly browned. Lower to medium heat, then add the minced pork and cook for a further 5-6 minutes, until the pork is cooked through and begins to brown slightly. Use your spatula to break up the meat until it has separated.

3. Add the light soy sauce, palm sugar, pepper, spring onions, chopped coriander, and crushed peanuts, and stir well. Cook for a further 4-5 minutes until the mixture is dry and sticky. Taste and season with more soy sauce, as required.

4. To serve, place pineapple segments on plate, then scoop a tablespoonful of cooked minced meat onto the segment. Garnish with a slice of chilli and coriander leaf each.

Note: If serving to children, omit the chilli.

All the dishes we had during our gathering. You can read more about each individual dish here.

*I am submitting this to Cook-Your-Books #6 hosted by Joyce of Kitchen Flavours and to Asian Food Fest #2 Oct 2013 : Thailand hosted by Lena from Frozen Wings.

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  1. Pineapple eh? Looks great. Should be great with dried prawn sambal topping too.

  2. This dish looks as pretty as its name, interesting :)

  3. Gorgeous dish. Relatively healthy too,

  4. Oh I love these! We had them at Nahm restaurant in Bangkok. I had no idea that they translated to galloping horses though!

  5. That's a really interesting appetiser! Love the meat sitting on the pineapple. Should be very refreshing.

  6. Look mouth-watering, salivate looking at it!!

  7. Interesting name and very appetising!

  8. I like the colours and name of this appetizer. Great for parties!

  9. Hi Yen,
    I have seen this recipe in one of my cookbooks, and thought it interesting, pairing pineapples with minced meat! What a great appetizer! Looks delicious!
    Thanks for sharing with CYB!

  10. when you first mentioned galloping horses for the menu at the gathering, i was curious to know what is that but too bad, i didnt make it to the gathering.. thx for featuring this, i'm seeing and learning something new :)

  11. Oooo I hadn't known the name and background of this dish. Good to have the info here!

  12. Have never heard of this dish and it sounds so flavourful...pineapple with pork. Interesting to know about its history

  13. Tried and love it, thanks for sharing, Baby Sumo!

    1. Hello :) Thx so much for trying out the recipe and glad to hear that you liked it :)


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