Saturday, September 4, 2010

Thai Pork Chops and Stir Fry Veg

I recently came across this on Smitten Kitchen: and I was determined to try it out. (First I had to get to the Asian grocery store to get hoisin.) I didn't have any chicken legs and while I thought it might be good on turkey drumsticks, I'm saving those for turkey pot pie when it gets cooler. :-) We did have pork chops, and that sounded like an excellent combination. (To preview: it was! I'm practically drooling as I write this, remembering...) I'll repost the Smitten Kitchen instructions here, which we mostly followed, aside from snubbing the oven entirely (particularly at 450 degrees!!) and using a cast iron skillet instead.

for the marinade:
5 garlic cloves
1/4 c cilantro
1/4 c fish sauce
1/4 c canola oil
4 T hoisin sauce
1 1/2 t coriander
1 t salt
1 t black pepper

2 porkchops (we used boneless but bone-in would be fine)

Whirr together everything but the chops in a blender or food processor until it's mostly smooth. Use about 1/2 of the marinade to generously coat the chops and refrigerate for 30-60 minutes. Reserve the rest of the marinade for veggies, see below.

Once pork is marinating, chop veggies:

1 medium onion, sliced
2 japanese eggplants (no need to peel)
1 bell pepper
a handful of shitakes wouldn't be amiss here either

Mix the veggies together with the remaining marinade and throw in the fridge too.

Start rice (jasmine is excellent with this).

Take a cat nap or otherwise occupy 10 minutes...

Then heat a large skillet over high heat with a heavy splash of oil. When the oil is shimmering add veggies and any marinade that wasn't absorbed. Stir fry for 2-3 minutes or until onions are starting to brown, then reduce the heat and add a few T of water, let cook until eggplant is tender (about 3 more minutes).

There are two chop-cooking options:

Skillet: While the veggies are cooking heat a heavy skillet (cast iron if possible) to med-high head with more oil. Add the pork chops and cook about 3 minutes per side-- they should brown and be barely pink in the center when done. If the marinade starts to carmelize in the pan that's fine (in fact, delicious), but if it's starting to char (carefully) add a T of water. Remove chops from pan and let them stand five minutes, then slice.

Wok: Reserve cooked veggies to a plate and add more oil to wok. Slice chops (only boneless work here) into 1/4 in strips and cook over med-high heat (in batches if needed) until slightly browned and no longer pink. Serve immediately.

If the veggies are done and have cooled, reheat them over high heat in the wok. Serve over rice. And HOLY CRAP, this is good. Go make it now. No excuses, just do it. Trust me on this one. (Have I ever steered you wrong?)

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