Monday, May 9, 2016

Sweet and Sour Pork

A while back I bought a pork loin and cut it into smaller roasts. I pulled one out of the freezer on Saturday, cut off three chops to grill, then put the rest back in the fridge. When I was thinking through the menu plan for the week I knew I needed to use up that piece of pork, briefly contemplated cutting it into chops but decided I wanted something different. I was thinking some sort of stir fry would be good. I pulled out my A Wok for All Seasons cookbook by Martin Yan to flip through and found the sweet and sour pork recipe. I knew it would be a hit with the family.

One tip on this one - the meat is cut small enough that it cooks really fast. You really need to have it all prepared before you start cooking.

Sweet and Sour Pork
serves 4

1 Tbsp dry sherry
1 tsp minced fresh ginger
1/2 tsp salt

3/4 lb boneless lean pork, cut into 3/4-inch cubes

Sweet and Sour Sauce
1/3 c distilled white vinegar
1/3 c packed brown sugar
1/4 c ketchup
1/4 c water
1 Tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp soy sauce

1 egg lightly beaten
cornstarch for coating meat
vegetable oil for cooking
1 green pepper, cut into 1-inch squares
1 small onion, cut into 1-inch squares
3/4 c pineapple chunks
cooked white rice for serving

Combine marinade ingredients in a medium bowl. Add pork and stir to coat. Set aside for 30 minutes.
Combine sauce ingredients in a small saucepan and set aside.
Place egg and cornstarch in separate bowls. Dip pork in egg, then roll in cornstarch, shaking off excess.

In a wok add oil, 1-2" deep and heat over high heat. Add pork, a few pieces at a time, and cook, turning occasionally, for about 3 minutes or until golden brown. Lift out and drain on paper towels.

Meanwhile, cook sauce over medium-high heat, stirring, until sauce boils and thickens. When the pork is done, dump out the oil and clean the wok. Add a couple of tablespoons of oil, heat the oil, then add the green pepper and onion. Stir fry these for a few minutes then add the pineapple; stir-fry until the peppers and onions are crisp-tender and the pineapple is warmed. Add the thickened sauce, stir to coat, then add the pork and cook until it's heated through. Serve over rice.

modified from Martin Yan's recipe in "A Wok for All Seasons"

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Fresh Strawberry Muffins

This is the strawberry muffin recipe that was trending around Facebook last spring. I made it once, we loved it, then lost the recipe. Thankfully I found it again this spring and have already made it twice. This is a quick and easy muffin recipe; what takes the most time is chopping the strawberries.

Fresh Strawberry Muffins
makes 12 muffins

1/2 c butter, softened
3/4 c sugar
1 egg
2 c flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 c milk
1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 c chopped strawberries
3 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 400*. Cream the butter and sugar together. Add the egg and mix well.

Mix the flour, baking powder, and salt in a small bowl. Add flour mixture and milk alternately to the butter mixture. Add vanilla. Gently stir in strawberries.

Spoon the batter into greased muffin pans. Combine sugar and cinnamon and sprinkle over muffins.

Bake muffins for 20-25 minutes. Enjoy!