Sunday, January 23, 2011

It's been a few days since I've updated the blog! Sorry faithful followers! Friday night we had our great friends and cousins the Watson's over for dinner. I'm tired of serving steak to our guests all the time so I decided to go with homemade Spicy Pork Stir-Fry and a couple other Asian-inspired side dishes instead. The main course was a sweet and spicy stir-fry recipe I found at Marthastewart.com a couple years ago. It's great for serving a crowd, just double the recipe and your set. Here's the recipe:

Sweet and Sour Pork Stir-Fry

Ingredients:
  • 1 can (8 ounces) pineapple chunks in juice, drained (juice reserved)
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 pork tenderloin (about 1 pound), halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 6 scallions, white and green parts separated, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 2 bell peppers (ribs and seeds removed), cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 package (10 ounces) frozen broccoli florets, thawed and patted dry
  • Cooked rice, for serving

Directions

  1. In a small bowl, stir together 1/3 cup pineapple juice, vinegar, soy sauce, cornstarch, and 1/4 cup water. Season sauce with salt and pepper.
  2. In a large nonstick skillet, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high. Cook pork, in two batches, until well browned on one side, about 1 minute (pork will cook more later); transfer to a plate.
  3. To skillet, add scallion whites and bell peppers; season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring, until peppers are crisp-tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
  4. Add pork (along with any juices), broccoli, and pineapple chunks. Whisk sauce; add to skillet. Bring to a simmer; cook, stirring, until broccoli is warmed through, 2 to 4 minutes. Stir in scallion greens, and serve with rice.

I think our guests really enjoyed it! And I had quite a bit leftover since I doubled the recipe so we had lunch the next day. :)

Here's a pic of what the sauce looks like that you mix up in Step 1.
No one had ever explained to me before what the purpose of Corn-Starch was. I had to google it. :) It's used in recipes to thicken sauces, like shown here. Without the corn-starch, your sauce would be too runny.

Whenever we are having guests, I always try to save as much prep time as I can by getting things ready the day before (if possible.) The morning of the dinner I went ahead and chopped up my pork, bell peppers, and I thawed the broccoli.


For our side dishes, we had my favorite Crab Rangoon and Egg Rolls. I got the Egg Rolls at Wally World and the Rangoon's at Schnucks. Both of these items are just heat and serve dishes.

I also had my husband's personal favorite, Asian Pot-Stickers or as some call them; Dumplings. I always keep a supply of these little guys on hand not only because their Hubby's fav, but because their relatively easy to prepare and pretty healthy. Wal-Mart has three varieties; Chicken, Pork, and Vegetable.
The Tai-Pei brand describes three different cooking instructions. The "recommended" method is simply frying the potstickers in oil on the stove. I find that this browns the dumplings a little too much on the outside and doesn't heat them all the way on the inside. I cooked them by the "traditional" method of boiling them in hot water first to cook the inside and then frying them to slightly brown the outside. Worked perfectly. Guess the "traditionalists" were right all along. ;)

And of course, what Asian-inspired feast would be complete without rice. I ALWAYS cook rice by steaming it in the microwave. It's quick, delicious, and well, that's all it needs to be for me to be happy. Here's the brand I buy:
Ok, so it's a little bit more expensive than buying raw rice and cooking it on the stove. But it's so worth it to me not to have to stand next to the stove and constantly stir for 20 minutes. This cooks in the bag in 4 minutes. Just open and serve.

Dinner's Ready!


Pork Stir-Fry and Rice

Table is set!

Happy Cooking Friends! Have a Great Monday Tomorrow!!!

1 comment:

  1. I love those crab rangoons too!!! The whole meal looks delicious.

    ReplyDelete