Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I'm Back/ Stir fry with pork

Well, I've finally taken down the Christmas tree and put away all the decorations, pieces from the Christmas scene, etc. I've neglected all my blogs during this time, because I get completely immersed in the holiday thing. A comment from one of my readers on my last post (from months ago it seems) woke me to the fact that I haven't been writing anything or taking any pictures. So, I've made a New Year's resolution to do more. To that end, I've bought a battery recharger which will provide me with fresh batteries for my camera without having to discard old batteries- something that really disturbed me about using my camera in the past. And, I resolve to take pictures of all I cook so I have something to write about. So, since most of what I write about is either vegetarian or fish, I thought I would include this meal which is one that I cooked for myself. When Neeta (my wife) isn't around, I turn to my freezer if I'm in the mood for meat. Generally, I keep a stash of meat in relatively small portions in the freezer for these eventualities. So, I found three small pork cutlets I had since September and decided to use them. Living in Queens which happens to be the most diverse county in America enables me to keep a pantry of Asian flavoring ingredients. Here's my recipe for stir fried pork.It will make enough for two.

Ingredients: 3 boneless pork cutlets, a clove of garlic sliced, one tablespoon ginger paste, one small onion diced, one small carrot sliced on the bias, a small sweet potato peeled and diced, one mango peeled and sliced, 1 tbs.dark soy sauce, 1 tbs.regular soy sauce or tamari, (Asian recipes generally call for both the dark and regular types of soy, but you can get away with just the regular with the addition of a tsp. of brown sugar) Sriracha hot chili sauce to taste, and a slurry of 1/2 cup cold water mixed into 1/2 tsp.corn starch.

Procedure: First, I started a pot of Jasmine rice. While that was cooking, I  fried the pork quickly in 1and1/2 Tbs. of Canola oil over high heat just enough to brown the cutlets nicely. (They will still be pink inside) I removed them from the pan and tossed in the garlic, ginger paste and onion, followed with  the potato and carrot. I stir fried the vegetables until they were getting soft ( about 2 minutes) and then added the soy sauce, mango and chili sauce. Then I sliced the meat into strips and added them to the pan. After a minute, I added about half the water/corn starch slurry, and let the mix bubble till the corn starch thickened the juices in the pan. At this point, you could add more of the slurry depending on how much sauce you desire. Practice makes perfect.

Stir frying the meat first flavors the pan, but you should remove it while you cook the vegies or it will overcook.

After adding the meat (sliced into strips) to the vegies and fruit, add the soy sauce and chili sauce

The addition of the water/corn starch slurry brings the whole dish together. Let it cook till it reaches the consistency you like.

The finished dish. Obviously, you can do this with beef instead of pork and any vegetables you choose. Also, pineapple can replace the mango.

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