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Cabbage and Pork Stir-Fry

February 6, 2014

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Cabbage is one of those vegetables that I don’t think about much, other than in cole slaw or on St. Paddy’s day in March. Yet, it’s one of the most difficult vegetables to miss in the isles of a grocery store, usually stacked in heaps. Perhaps it’s an uninspiring vegetable, both in form and taste, that seems to escape my attention. But all of that has changed now. I have found a way to create excitement and a bounty of flavor with cabbage. And it shall have a special place in my house from now on. Way to go cabbage!

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Malaysia boasts the best Chinese cuisine in all of Southeast Asia. It’s flavorful and vibrant, unmatched by the Chinese cuisine in the surrounding regions. Chinese food has always been one of my favorite cuisines, even during the early days of my life in Malaysia. When people ask me to describe Malaysian cuisine, I often find myself diverting to Chinese cooking techniques or the flavorful ingredients they use. It happens so naturally.

What’s so great about cabbage and pork? Well, for starters I couldn’t believe how easy it is to make this recipe. It jumped out at me as I was flipping through Fuchsia Dunlop’s book Every Grain of Rice. The ingredient list might not be as exciting as one would expect, but with pork in it, how can anyone deny the glory of this dish? Pork and cabbage go together like a horse and carriage. Pork is naturally salty, so you don’t need much more seasoning. That briny flavor brings a game on match to the cabbage.

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Cabbage and Pork Stir-Fry

Serves 2 as a main course or 4 as a side dish

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons of peanut oil

1 tablespoon of sesame oil

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1 piece of ginger (4-5cm), finely chopped

A few dried red chilies (optional)

1 lb. pork chops, bones removed, sliced into thin strips

2-3 tablespoons of Shaoxing cooking wine or rice wine

1/2 a head of cabbage, shredded

1 tablespoon of Red Boat fish sauce

Salt and pepper to taste

Method: 

1) Blanch the cabbage in boiling hot water for 1/2 a minute.

2) Bring a large pan to heat and pour in two tablespoons of peanut oil and sesame oil.

3) Sauté the garlic, ginger and dried red chilies.

4) Add the pork and cook for 3-5 minutes.

5) Deglaze the pan with Shaoxing cooking wine.

6) Toss in the cabbage and mix well.

7) Pour the fish sauce over the cabbage. Use more if you like a briny taste.

8) Season with salt and pepper and serve hot with rice.

Additional Reads:

Life Made Sweeter: Stir Fried Shanghai Noodles with ground Pork and Napa Cabbage

Meatified:Stir Fried Pork with Cabbage Noodles

Nom Nom Paleo: Nom Nom Paleo’s Month of Whole 30 Recipes, Day 29

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From → Meats, Recipes, Vegetarian

6 Comments
  1. Cabbage and pork stir fry. Great served with some steamed rice. Thanks for sharing!

    • chefmo73 permalink

      Yes. Rice is precisely what we had it with. There’s something simply wonderful about rice. It seems to melt, and mold the flavors of whatever it accompanies.

  2. Love those red chile peppers! I think cabbage is underutilized and under appreciated. Nice dish!

  3. Every time I prepare cabbage — and it isn’t that often at all — I wonder why I don’t make it more often. Your stir fry sounds like a great dish and I love the combo of pork with cabbage.

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