When you squeeze an orange, orange juice comes out – because that's what's inside. When you are squeezed, what comes out is what is inside. – Wayne Dyer
|Always remember if "it's out there" you can find it via Google.|
Today I’m posting a Chinese-style recipe that was a solution to a problem. I had pork, white mushrooms and some bok choy left over in my refrigerator. What to do, what to do…
Well, when in doubt consult the google-orium. Here’s a good tip – if you have certain ingredients you need to get rid of google them together with the word “recipe” in your search. Just because you don’t know what to do with them doesn’t mean nobody “out there” does.
|This is just before the sauce comes to a boil.|
It works like a charm, and you get the most amazing unexpected ideas. Many of my recipes begin life like that. You do need to be a little daring in the kitchen, have knowledge of what works and what doesn't, and some understanding of what makes a dish a certain “ethnicity.”
I found a recipe for Chinese-style pork with mushrooms and garlic that sounded like a good place to start. Of course what I ended up making bears little resemblance to the original. In fact the recipe I found sounded a little boring… but it did answer my query.
I think the original came from a site that offered “North Americanized” Chinese recipes. I decided to bring it back closer to what was intended.
My changes? The hoisin, orange, bok choy, five spice, chillies, green onions… I think you get my drift. It’s far and away from where it started. I also opted to substitute the white mushrooms for dried shiitake I had on hand. They're more in the Chinese vein.
Of course you always have your pantry staples to rely on. Hoisin (always in my 'fridge) and orange are a fantastic combination and five spice powder (in the spice cabinet) is unmistakably Chinese. Despite the chillies this recipe isn’t very hot. In reality I would say this is more “Cantonese” style as opposed to the much more fiery Sichuan.
It was quite tasty. If you like your Chinese a little more on the subtle side this dish is for you.
Orange Pork with Shiitake and Bok Choy
Prep: 20 min | Cook: 15 min | Serves 4
|And this is two minutes later. Yum....|
1 lb pork, cubed
8 dried shiitake mushrooms
4 cups sliced bok choy
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup orange juice (fresh)
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 tbsp hoisin
4 cloves garlic, chopped
1" ginger, peeled and shredded
3 hot green finger chillies, sliced
1 tsp cornstarch, mixed with 2 tbsp water
1/2 tsp five spice powder
6 green onions, sliced
1/4 cup cilantro, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Reconstitute the mushrooms in enough hot water to cover them for 20 minutes. In the meantime, prepare all the other ingredients.
Mix the soy sauce with the vinegar, hoisin and orange juice and set aside. It’s best to get the most flavourful oranges you can.
Heat the oil in a wok until sizzling and fry the pork until just no longer pink. Salt and pepper the pork while it fries. Remove and set aside.
Add the chopped garlic, ginger and chillies. Fry for about 1 minute. Drain and chop the shiitake mushrooms. Add to the wok and fry for another 2 minutes.
Put the pork back into the wok and add the orange juice mixture.
Stir the cornflour /water mixture to ensure it’s dissolved, then add to the stock. Bring to a boil and when the sauce thickens add the bok choy.
Toss for about 2 minutes until the bok choy starts to soften a little. Sprinkle with the hoisin and toss again. Then add the green onions and cilantro and toss well. Taste for salt and adjust.
Serve over rice.
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