Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Not your typical sweet and sour pork

Haven't written a cooking post for a while - that's because I haven't put too much effort in it. I finally tried a new recipe today.

I find the recipe in Bill Granger's cookbook Bill's Basic. I was trying to find a recipe at a book store, saw one that I liked and used my phone to take photos of the recipe, which is a naughty thing to do, but I was kind of desperate.  Hopefully my mentioning of his book in this post is some kind of atonement.

Anyway, the recipe was named "Sweet and Sour Pork", but the photo accompanying the recipe didn't look anything like the usual one.

The recipe requires yellow curry paste. The shops that I went to have didn't have any (and to be honest I didn't know what yellow curry was) so I bought some massaman curry instead. After googling, I now know that yellow curry is called gaeng kari in Thai and its main ingredients are cumin, coriander, turmeric, fenugreek, garlic, salt, bay leaf, lemongrass, cayenne pepper, ginger, mace and cinnamon. I will seek that out before I make this dish next time.

This is the pork (thinly sliced) coated in the curry paste.

After stir frying the pork in batches, then some pineapple briefly, in the wok went thinly sliced Spanish onion, green beans and cherry tomatoes.

By the way, you can see the little black flakes on the food, which I believe are blackened oil and spices from cooking the pork.  They didn't affect the taste of the dish but I don't like the look.  Does anyone know how I can avoid them in the future?

The pork and pineapple pieces went back into the wok.  I added lime juice, fish sauce, brown sugar and some basil, cooked it a bit more and the dish was ready!

It was yummo!  The curry wasn't too hot (TLG ate some as well), the sweetness of the fresh pineapple pieces (get that if you can, so much better than the canned variety) contrasted well with the spices, the green beans were crisp, and the dish was so refreshing.

Does it taste like the sweet and sour pork that we know? No, but it captured the zing of the original, which is the important part IMO.

P.S. I went to Victoria's Basement and bought the Cole and Mason Duo salt/pepper grinder today.  I bought the red one which is a fair bit cheaper ($23.95) than the silver one I blogged about the other day.  I think it looks pretty sharp.

Pepper comes out when you grind clockwise and salt comes out when you grind anticlockwise.  It's clearly labelled at the top so there's little chance for error.

I also bought this octopus tape dispenser from the little homeware shop across the road from Victoria's Basement.  Isn't it cute?

My camera is really on its last legs *sigh*, so there's a new item on my replacement shopping list...


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