In a large mixing bowl, combine the beef
with the remaining seasoning ingredients, mixing well by hand. Cover and
refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
About 1 hour before serving time, start
the barbecue fire. Soak the bamboo skewers.
To make the meatballs, lay 1 leaf on a
flat surface and place a generous tablespoonful of filling onto the leaf
at the stem end. Fold the top edge over the filling and fold the right
and left sides in over the filling. Roll up the leaf tightly, making a
packet about 5 cm ( 2 in) long. Repeat until all the filling is used up,
for a total of 36 leaves.
Thread 3 rolls on a single skewer. Brush
the rolls with vegetable oil and grill over medium-hot coals 5 to 6
minutes. The leaves will char slightly. Remove from fire and serve with
nuoc cham dipping sauce.
Wild pepper leaves are known as "La Lot"
in Vietnam, daun kaduk in Malaysia and Indonesia, and chaa phluu in
Thailand. If they are not available, substitute with vine leaves.