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Stir-Fried Pork with Cabbage in Hot-and-Sour Sauce (with leftover pork)

2011 February 24
by Mrs. FoodieLawyer
Stir Fry

Whenever we cook pork tenderloin, we make sure our weekly menu includes a second meal using the leftover pork.  For some reason, these leftover pork recipes almost always end up being Asian — Pork Fried Rice and Moo Shoo Pork, to name a few.  Maybe it’s because pork takes on the Asian flavors so well.  Or because these recipes are usually really fast and easy to prepare during the week.  Whatever the reason, here’s another Asian dish using pork.  We found this stir-fry recipe in Cook’s Illustrated’s “The Quick Recipe” cookbook.  Although we chose the hot-and-sour sauce to go along with it, the book contains several other sauces that would also work well.  Proteins other than pork would also be good in this recipe.  We really like the versatility of stir-fry and will try some of the other flavor combinations when we need to use up some leftover pork, chicken or beef.

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The ingredients for the hot-and-sour sauce are dry sherry (we didn’t have any so we used red wine instead), rice vinegar, soy sauce, sesame oil, chili garlic sauce, sugar and cornstarch.  You should be able to find all of these items in the Asian section of your local grocery store.  The chili garlic sauce is especially useful to have on hand — we use it in lots of different marinades/sauces, even ones that are not Asian.  It has a great spicy flavor.

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For the stir-fry, we used leftover pork tenderloin, napa cabbage, red bell pepper, ginger, garlic and scallions.

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To avoid cross-contamination of your cutting board, cut up all the non-meat ingredients before cutting the pork.  Sliced red bell pepper gets stir fried first.

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Then the sliced cabbage will go into the stir fry.  This recipe uses a lot of cabbage.  Slice or chop it into pretty big pieces since it will cook down a bit in the stir fry.

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The white and light green parts of the scallions will go in the stir fry at the same time as the minced garlic and ginger, so Dan put those in the same container.

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The green parts of the scallions, cut along a diagonal, will go in the stir fry last.  This was our personal touch to the recipe, which did not call for using the green parts.  But we love using these in most of our Asian recipes, adding them when the dish is almost done so they barely cook.  They add a bit of crunch and fresh flavor.

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Slice the pork into thin strips.

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Heat a couple tablespoons of vegetable oil in a skillet or wok.  (Probably should go with wok if you have one — our skillet got pretty cramped by the time we added all the ingredients.)  Over medium-high heat, saute the red peppers for about 1-2 minutes.

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Next, stir in the cabbage and cook it for another 1-2 minutes.

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Push the cabbage and peppers to the outer edges of the skillet, leaving a spot in the middle to heat the scallions, ginger and garlic until fragrant (meaning you can smell it cooking) — about 30-45 seconds.  Then stir everything together.

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Add the pork to the skillet and cook for 2-3 minutes just to heat it (since it is already cooked.)

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Reduce the heat, add the sauce and stir everything together well.   Cook for 1-2 minutes to combine the flavors.

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Finally, turn off the heat and stir in the green parts of the scallions.  They’ll cook a tiny bit in the residual heat while you get ready to plate the meal.

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We served the finished stir-fry over jasmine rice.  Delicious use of leftover pork!

Stir-Fried Pork and Napa Cabbage in Hot-and-Sour Sauce (with leftover pork)

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 to 2 cups leftover cooked pork tenderloin, sliced into thin strips
  • 1 red bell pepper, cut into strips
  • ½ a medium-sized napa cabbage, shredded into strips
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 3 cloves)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
  • 2 tablespoons minced scallions (white and light green parts only, save dark green parts for garnish)
  • 2-3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Ingredients for Hot-and-Sour Sauce:
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry (or red wine)
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 4 teaspoons chili paste
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch
Directions:
Combine all the hot-and-sour sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet or wok.  Add the red bell pepper and saute over medium-high heat for about 1-2 minutes.  Add the cabbage and heat for another 1-2 minutes.  Push the cabbage and peppers to the outer edges of the pan to clear skillet/wok space in the middle for the garlic, ginger and scallions.  Add the garlic, ginger and scallions and cook until fragrant — about 30-45 seconds.  Stir these ingredients in with the cabbage and peppers.  Add the sliced pork and cook for 2-3 minutes to heat it through.  Reduce the heat to low and add the hot-and-sour sauce.  Stir well and cook for about 1-2 minutes.  Remove the skillet/wok from the heat and stir in the green parts of the scallions.  Serve over jasmine rice.

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