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Turmeric Pork Skewers & Thai Basil Dipping Sauce

August 14, 2015

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.

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce_watermarked /

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.

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce_watermarked /

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.

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce_watermarked /

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.

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce_watermarked /

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.

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce_watermarked /

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.

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce_watermarked /

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.

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce_watermarked /

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!!!

Alaskan Adventure/

Turmeric Pork Skewers and Thai Basil Dipping Sauce /



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Healthy World Cuisine (HWC) Magazine is committed to provide a lifestyle traveling culinary experience featuring fresh ingredients, easy recipe preparation and culinary enjoyment. READ MORE...

Turmeric Pork Skewers & Thai Basil Dipping Sauce

By HWC Magazine  , , , , , , , , ,   

August 14, 2015

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.

  • Cook: 30 mins
  • Yields: 4 Adults



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)


1Marinate 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.

2Make 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.

3Soak 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.

4Prepare and oil your grill and preheat. Cook your turmeric pork skewers for about 3 minutes on each side until nicely charred and cooked through.

5Serve your delicious Turmeric Pork skewers & Thai Basil Dipping Sauce as a delicious healthy meal. Enjoy!

  • turmeric, from what I have read, is one of the best things you can consume – is full of life-gIVING PROPERTIES. Ooops, sorry – hit cap lock!

  • Oh my goodness, Bobbi, did your son take that pic of Alaska? Stunning!
    And this dish is just scrumptious! Love your tasty photos, I want to grab those right off the screen. I’m a big fan of turmeric as well and I know this combination of flavors must be fantastic. You’re SO good at creating taste explosions!
    Insanity indeed. Let’s all hang on as summer ends, lol. Have a great weekend 🙂

  • What an unforgettable experience for you son.
    Your combination of flavors are great and I love turmeric , together with the dipping sauce this pork tenderloin must be real taste sensation .

  • Turmeric, ginger, onion and garlic feature heavily in Sri Lankan cooking too and I grew up on these as a base to every curry/marinade around and so I am sitting here drooling at your pork skewers, Bobbie! And with that thai basil sauce – mmm – these must have been hard to resist!
    Hoping you enjoy this last bit of summer with your boys and I bet your younger one had some stories to share after his trip!

  • kitchenriffs

    I actually saw fresh turmeric root in our grocery store the other day! Amazed — always have to make due with the dried stuff (which is pretty good, actually). But it’s not a regular item — I guess they got a deal on it or something. Sold out pretty quickly, though. Anyway, super dish. I’m with you on the color of turmeric — so nice, isn’t it? Really like this — thanks.

  • Your son is finally back, you must be one happy momma! Did he bring you any new spices? I only used turmeric in my samosas but will definitely try this recipe before summer is over! It looks delicious. Have a great weekend! XO

  • I knew your son was going to a mountaineering course, but I didn’t know it was NOLS – that’s SO cool! What an amazing experience!

    I love Thai skewers and this recipe certainly looks and sounds incredible! My husband would be all over this! So making this, this weekend! Pinned and Yummed, of course 🙂

  • This sounds like a great dish and that basil dipping sauce sounds especially good, since I’m such a basil-lover! 🙂

  • I do have turmeric in my spice drawer and I want to use if more often! Thanks for this delicious recipe! Pinning and sharing!

  • Eha

    Wow!! Both skewers and sauce!! [Now I know a few are going to disengage when I admit I use more of your recipes than those from any other beloved source!]. Use turmeric almost every day and have for years: tho’ at times have to admit to the powder form!! Have to get coconut oil. Want to prep the basil sauce properly: am planting a couple of kinds of Thai basil in about four weeks as always nice to have something ‘holy’ in my garden! . . . and then . . . to me it is SO different from ordinary summer basil [mine does not overwinter] that I’ll happily wait for it!! . . . . and may we please have a little bit more info re your son’s summer trip . . . .

    • Dearest Eha, your sweet comment just made my day. 🙂 I am glad that you are not afraid of my recipes that contain more than 5 ingredients as Asian recipes are just this way sometimes…but full of flavor. I think I may have over harvested my poor holy basil as today she is looking a little sad. I might need to start talking to my plants more or something?! LOL I tried freezing fresh turmeric and it does not stay firm like fresh ginger so not highly suggested but ground turmeric is nice too and so good for you.

      My son has not stopped talking about his 30 day Alaskan trip in the Talkeetna tundra, it was a real positive experience for him. They learned how to cross fast moving rivers, climb in adverse conditions, be team players and also hone their leadership skills, how to deal with bears, moose, all all sorts of wildlife. His favorite part was learning wilderness first aid as this is an area he wants to study. They learned how to survive out in the wilderness with only 2 food drops in 30 days. The campers even made cinnamon rolls over the fire…with limited supplies. A trip with memories that will last a lifetime.

  • This looks sooo good! We’ve had a ton of Thai basil from or CSA this year and I’m always trying to figure out what to do with it. A girl can only have so many bowls of Thai noodles and basil. This recipe is perfect!

  • Priya Shiva

    These pork skewers look heavenly and such lovely flavours of ginger and delicious basil sauce!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Priya! Layers of flavours is always delicious. Wishing you a super weekend!

  • I love the color combination of this dish. Tumeric is great for your immune system. Especially good in the winter to keep colds at bay.

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Elizabeth. Turmeric is really good for your health and especially at the start of the school year to give our kids a little extra immune boost.

  • Yes, yes, yes!
    Man Bam, this looks outstanding. Love the turmeric marinade and I learned the hard way using fresh turmeric. It really does stain! I agree the longer the marinade the better and to top it off with that Thai basil dipping sauce looks like a bit of heaven. Delicious!
    That last photo is just amazing!

    • Bams Kitchen

      Thank you Kevin, tell me about it… Today I made a little bit of your Moroccan spice rub with dry turmeric and yep.. we have a used to be white countertop with gold streaks…LOL Thanks goodness it cleans up easy with bleach. I will let my son know you like his photography…

  • I love the sound of this I love finding new porkie ideas, a much under rated meat in my opinion and I love it… The Thai basil dressing sounds amazing and I love the flavour of turmeric!

  • I found some fresh turmeric a few weeks ago at an organic market. I know it stains so easily, but it’s lovely to use. Glad your son returned safe and sound from his trip 🙂

  • What a great take on satay! I love love love this idea- the marinade sounds absolutely perfect. Glad you’re not afraid of generous amounts of garlic and ginger. YUM! One of these days I might have to fly to Hong Kong for you to cook for me 😉

  • Looks incredible!! Looking forward to grilling again when I get home!!

  • What an incredible learning experience your son had! I’m not an outdoor/wilderness loving kind of person, but I love watching those wilderness survival shows like Man vs. Wild. Love these pork skewers! They look and sound incredible!! Pinning.

  • I have turmeric bursting out of my spice rack, its one spice I know is really good for you, but find it difficult to work into my cooking, something about the taste puts me off. But with your gorgeous thai basil sauce, reckon it’d be delicious. Will give it a whirl for sure. 🙂

  • I bet leaving that pork in that delicious marinade all night certainly makes a difference. They look so juicy, tender and tasty Bobbi! Pinned, stumbled and shared my friend!

  • Fabulous sounding recipe. Pinned.

  • I saw this one the other day on G+ and I loved it! We have a large bag of turmeric powder in the kitchen, but I never learnt the right way to use it. These skewers are amazing, and burst with flavor! I can smell the nice fragrant of the herbs from these pictures 🙂 Great job done Bobbi! And btw, the mountain picture is beautiful! Wish I can make a trip to Alaska soon. Stunning landscape and delicious salmon!

  • getresultsllcgetresultsllc

    Ermagerd that looks amazing. I had pork skewers when I was in Thailand but I haven’t bee able to find any good recipes for it since I’ve come back to the states. I’ll try this one out tomorrow. Over the next few months I’ll be posting all of the recipes that I learned from a cooking school in Chiang Mai, Thailand here on my blog

  • safie


  • hotlyspiced

    I know what you mean about turmeric. I was cooking with it last week and it’s amazing just how strong the colour is. It sounds like your son had an incredible time away. I would love to see Alaska although maybe without so much survival stuff – I’d like a hotel room! I love the look of your skewers and they have so many flavour I really love – I adore Thai basil and hope to start growing it this Spring xx

  • These look so flavorful and delicious!! I’m also a big fan of tumeric–love the color, flavor and health benefits.

  • Do not see fresh tumeric in our local food markets but will keep looking. What a fantastic opportunity for your son to spend 30 days in Alaska, hope you will tell us more.

  • Oh, wow! I love everything about this dish! Not only is it gorgeous to look at, but the flavor combinations just sound extraordinary. I’ll definitely be adding this into the rotation one day this week.

  • My Kitchen Stories

    I loved that last picture…awe inspiring. Took my mind off those delicious flavours there for a minute.Pork and turmeric is also awe inspiring!

  • This is SO my kind of food!!! I adore the complex flavours of homemade curries but they are quite time consuming to make and always require special trips to Asian stores. Not this though!! I have everything I need in the fridge RIGHT NOW, except pork – I have chicken and I am thinking this will work a treat with chicken!!! YUM! Oh wait, just checked, I don’t have Thai basil either. But I am guessing it is still going to be fantastic if I sub it with coriander 🙂 PINNING and sharing!!

  • I bought ground turmeric over but never had the chance to use it, but now I have! This colour looks so brilliant, I’m sure it’s delicious!

  • We cooked these with beef and chicken the other day, and they turned out wonderful! We didn’t have time to start the grill, so we baked them in the oven. Yes the baked ones are never as good as grilled, but the skewers turn out wonderful nonetheless! Thanks for this wonderful recipe 🙂

    • Bams Kitchen

      I am so delighted you liked and tried the recipe and will have to remember your trick to bake in the oven, especially on those sideways rain days.

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