Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Sweet & Sour Pork

Last week I made this dish from Kylie Kwong’s Simple Chinese Cooking. The sauce was absolutely fantastic, the fresh ingredients work a treat & the flavours were beautiful, fresh & delicate. On the pork however I need some practice, I have no clue how to deep fry! I suspect I didn’t heat my oil high enough before I started so the end result was still tasty but not crisp, golden & luscious as promised. It’s funny you would think that deep frying would be the easiest cooking method of all but because I have always steered away from it, you know, too much fat, etc, I am way behind on this technique. Anyway the flavours were there & lots more recipes to perfect my technique on yet!

Sweet and Sour Pork

1 ½ tablespoons cornflour
1 tablespoon cold water
2 x 300g pork neck fillets, cut in half lengthways and then into bite sized pieces on the diagonal
2 egg yolks, lightly beaten
3 teaspoons light soy sauce
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 teaspoon sea salt
¼ cup plain flour
¼ cup cornflour
vegetable oil, for deep frying

Sweet and Sour Sauce

¼ small ripe pineapple, peeled
1 small carrot, peeled
1 small cucumber, peeled
¾ cup malt vinegar
5 tablespoons shao hsing wine or dry sherry
½ cup white sugar
1 teaspoons seal salt, extra
4 garlic cloves, crushed
2 tablespoons ginger, julienne
½ medium sized yellow pepper, julienned
2 small tomatoes, finely sliced
2 tablespoons light soy sauce

Blend cornflour with water in a bowl until dissolved. Add pork, egg yolks, soy sauce, sesame oil & salt and mix well. Cover & leave to marinate in the fridge overnight.

To make the sauce, remove core from pineapple & finely slice into pieces. Using a vegetable peeler, finely slice carrot lengthways into ribbons. Cut cucumber in half, slice on the diagonal & set aside, together with carrot & pineapple.

Place vinegar, wine or sherry, sugar & extra salt in a medium heavy-based saucepan & stir over high heat until sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil, add garlic, ginger, reduce heat & simmer, uncovered for 10 minutes. Add pineapple, carrot, cucumber, pepper & tomato & simmer for a further 3 minutes or until pineapple is tender & tomato has broken down slightly. Stir in soy sauce, remove from stove & set aside.

Combine plain flour & extra cornflour. Add the pork & mix well. Heat vegetable oil in a hot wok until surface seems to shimmer slightly. Deep fry pork in batches over high heat for 1 minute, then reduce heat to medium & fry for another 2 minutes, or until pork is almost cooked through. Remove & drain on absorbent paper. Gently reheat sauce. Return all pork to the hot wok & deep fry for a further 3 minutes, or until lightly browned, crispy & cooked through. Remove & drain well on paper. Serve with sauce.


Ellie said...

Deep frying is pretty easy (well, if we don't count the splattering oil!). To make sure that the oil is hot enough before starting the frying process, have a few cubes of bread on hand and toss one in. If the oil is hot, the oil will start bubbling rapidly around the bread - if you only get a few bubbles, it needs to be heated more.

If you want quite a crunchy exterior, you can double fry them - frying once at a slightly lower temp to cook them and get that exterior going, then drain, up the oil temp and fry again - you'll get a deep golden colour and quite a crunch :)

Ange said...

Ellie, thks for the tips, will try them out next time i have a mind to deep fry something!