Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Spicy Pork and Asparagus Stir Fry


Spicy Pork and Asparagus Stir Fry
adapted from Bon Appetit

Ingredients

2 tablespoons + 1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons Shaoxing (Chinese rice wine)
4 teaspoons cornstarch
1 1/2 pounds ground pork (preferably coarsely ground)
2 tablespoons sesame oil, divided
1 pound thin asparagus spears, trimmed, cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch pieces
2 tablespoons minced peeled fresh ginger
2 tablespoons chile garlic sauce
1/4 cup oyster sauce
1 tablespoon honey
4 scallions, sliced

Method

Whisk 2 tablespoons soy sauce, Shaoxing and cornstarch in medium bowl. Add pork and mix lightly to blend.

Heat 1 tablespoon sesame oil in heavy large wok (or deep skillet) over high heat. Add asparagus, chile sauce and ginger. Toss until asparagus is crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer asparagus mixture to plate and set aside.

Add remaining tablespoon sesame oil to wok. Add pork mixture and stir-fry until browned, using spoon to break up pork into small pieces, about 4 minutes. Return asparagus mixture to wok. Add remaining 1/4 cup soy sauce, oyster sauce, and honey. Stir-fry until pork is cooked through, about 2 minutes. Add scallions; toss to incorporate.

Serve over Jasmine rice, with more chile garlic sauce on the side.


NOTES

I knew when I saw Sarah post this that it would make an appearance on my blog. This is right up my alley - moderately spicy, slightly sweet, with the beautiful combination of sesame oil, ginger and scallions to bring it all together. And you know what? It was twice as good as I thought it would be. Spectacular, even. I need to hurry up and make it again while asparagus is still in season.

One note about the pork: I ground my own for the first time and, as with the chicken for my Gai Pad Grapow, I may never buy prepackaged again. The fresh stuff simply cooks far better in the high heat of the wok than the pre-ground clump. You can get a great coarse grind doing it yourself and, if you have a food processor, it's very little effort. Just cut fresh pork shoulder into 1- to 1 1/2-inch cubes, place them on a plate (or plates) in a single layer, freeze for 10-15 minutes (until stiff), then pulse in 1 pound batches in your food processor until coarsely ground. Easy easy and so much better in texture and flavor.