Jerking Around

A Singapore-style snack comes Stateside

There is the leathery, jaw-exhausting jerky that is a staple of gas stations far and wide. Then, there is Little Red Dot Kitchen's jerky.

Rather than strips of beef that have been dried, this Singapore-style jerky, known as bak kwa, is made from ground pork or turkey formed into neat slabs, marinated overnight in soy sauce, rice wine and a secret blend of puréed fruit, then smoked and grilled over charcoal until sweetly caramelized. It's jerky so tender, you can stick it between two slabs of bread for a sandwich.

Named for the little red dot on maps that typically denotes the country of Singapore, Little Red Dot Kitchen was founded by five friends, all from either Singapore or Malaysia. They missed their favorite native snack food so much, they decided to make their own. By weekday, they are all Silicon Valley engineers. But on weekends at a Campbell commercial kitchen, they transform into jerky-meisters.

A half-pound of turkey, pork or pork lite (less sugar and sodium) is $12.45. It keeps for months in the fridge. Warm it over a gas flame or in a toaster oven for a few seconds for jerky like no other.

Little Red Dot Kitchen; 408-673-8227 or reddotkitchen.com