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It’s Chinese New Year and it happens to be the year of the Goat/Sheep in 2015. Incidentally, I was born in a ‘Goat’ year. I have since been researching the traditions and it seems that my lucky colours are red, purple and brown. And my lucky flowers are primroses and carnations (I love carnations!). Anyhow, I digress (although it’s very interesting reading).

To commemorate the occasion we had a dig around for a new Chinese recipe to try out at home. This one is a takeaway/restaurant favourite for Dan, so we were fairly confident that we could reproduce it well in our kitchen. With a little help from Ken Hom, of course. ‘Stir-Fried Garlic Pork’ comes from his book ‘Hot Wok’ and the full ingredients list and cooking method can be found in there.

To make our version of this dish (serves two) you will need:
For the marinade:
– One tablespoon of Shaohsing rice wine
– One tablespoon of light soy sauce
– One teaspoon of cornflour
– Two teaspoons of sesame oil
For the main part:
– 450g of pork (we used fillet, cut into one and a half inch strips – currently very reasonably priced in Tesco)
– Two tablespoons of groundnut/sunflower oil
– Three spring onions (thinly sliced diagonally)
– One small bag of beansprouts (our addition)
– Three tablespoons of garlic (finely chopped)
– Two teaspoons of chilli bean sauce
– One tablespoon of light soy sauce
– One teaspoon of Shaohsing rice wine
– One tablespoon of chicken stock or water (we used stock)
– One teaspoon of sugar
– One tablespoon of sesame oil

Method:
– Put all of the marinade ingredients into a bowl and mix together well. Coat the pork in the marinade and refrigerate covered for twenty minutes to an hour.
– Heat a wok to a high temperature and add half the oil. Add the pork and stir fry rapidly for a few minutes. Drain and put to one side.
– Wipe the wok and reheat to a high temperature, adding the remaining oil. Add the spring onion, garlic and chilli bean paste.
– After a few seconds, introduce the rest of the ingredients to the wok. Bring to the boil and add the pork back into the pan.
– Stir-fry for a further five minutes and serve with plain rice or noodles (if using noodles like we did – cook according to packet, drain and rinse in cold water, set aside then when ready, add to the pan for the final five minutes of cooking, stirring well so they are fully coated and heated through).

This is a very quick and easy dish to both prepare and cook. It’s a perfect mid week supper, plus we’ve found pork fillet to be really well priced at present. The meal itself is wonderfully savoury and bursting with the flavour of garlic, alongside a little bit of heat provided by the chilli bean sauce (one of my most favourite Chinese ingredients). We chose to add beansprouts to give a little crunch to the plate, plus opted for noodles over rice as it doesn’t have a sauce, as such. Very tasty indeed. Happy Chinese New Year!

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