Thursday, March 26, 2015

Pork Fried Rice with Broccoli and Carrots

Stir-fried rice is an easy and delicious way to use up leftover cooked rice. I like to make it a complete meal in a bowl so this version includes pork and vegetables. Broccoli and carrots are my family's favourites but they can easily be substituted with whatever you prefer, just allow about one serving of vegetables per person.

                       Pork Fried Rice with Carrots and Broccoli
                                       makes 4 servings

prep time: 20-30 minutes
cooking time: 15-20 minutes

400-500g pork tenderloin
2 tsp sodium-reduced soy sauce
2 tsp cornstarch
2 cups (150g) broccoli florets, fresh or frozen
2 medium (200g) carrots, peeled and sliced (6mm thick) or 1 cup frozen
3 tbsp vegetable oil
2 large eggs
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4-1/2 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
4 cups (530g) cooked rice
2 tsp sodium-reduced soy sauce
salt and pepper to taste
2 spring onions, green parts only, thinly sliced
2 tbsp coarsely chopped peanuts, raw or roasted, preferably unsalted

medium sized pot if using fresh vegetables
seasoned or non-stick wok or a large non-stick fry pan
paper towel-lined plate
small, clean bowl
non-metal spatula

It's important to prepare all of your ingredients before you begin to cook since things happen very quickly once you start.
1. First up is the meat. I like to use pork tenderloin since it's very lean but also very tender and frequently on sale, so quite economical. 
But it has a nasty bit of connective tissue called silverskin that needs to be removed since it doesn't soften, even after cooking. A sharp knife with a fairly long, thin blade - a boning knife is perfect - makes this an easy job. 
silverskin silverskin1
Just find the section of silverskin on the tenderloin and slide your knife under a strip about 1 cm wide. Trying not to cut into the meat, slide the knife towards the end of the tenderloin. Hold the piece of silverskin taut and cut in the opposite direction towards the other end. 
silverskin2 silverskin3
Repeat. There's just a small patch of it so it will come off in a few strips. 
Trimmed tenderloin
halved pork slice
Cut the tenderloin in half lengthwise, then cut each piece crosswise into 6mm slices.
Sprinkle the meat with the 2 tsp soy sauce and cornstarch. Toss until the pieces are coated, and set aside.

2. Next up are the vegetables. 
If using fresh, bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Add the carrots and cook for 1 minute after the water returns to a boil. Add the broccoli, again cooking for 1 minute after the water returns to a boil. Drain and run them under cold water to stop the cooking. The vegetables won't be fully cooked, just blanched. You'll finish cooking them later. Blot them with some paper towels to absorb excess water.

If using frozen vegetables, put them in a colander or sieve and run cold water over them for a minute or two to defrost. Blot them with some paper towels to absorb excess water.

3. Once you've prepared the other ingredients, you're ready to start cooking. Have ready the plate lined with paper towels for the egg omelette, and the clean bowl for the cooked meat. 

Heat the wok/fry pan over high heat. In a small bowl, beat the eggs with a pinch each of salt and pepper. When the wok/fry pan is hot, add 1 tbsp vegetable oil. Pour in the eggs and swirl the pan so that they cover the bottom. Let them bubble and sizzle for about 2-3 minutes or until they are dry-looking and fully cooked on the top. Remove the egg omelette to the prepared plate with a spatula. 
4. Add 1 tbsp oil to the wok/fry pan. Add about a third of the meat slices. Keep them moving with a spatula making sure to separate the pieces. Remove them from the pan to the clean bowl after 2-3 minutes or once they're browned on all sides. The centres will still be pink but they'll finish cooking later. Repeat until all of the meat is browned.
5. Add 1 tbsp oil to the wok/fry pan. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes (if using). Cook for 1 minute or until fragrant. Add the rice and stir to coat with the oil, breaking up any clumps. Cook, stirring constantly, for 2-3 minutes or until hot. Add the soy sauce and cook 1 minute longer, stirring constantly. Lower the heat to medium-low. Add the vegetables and the meat and all of its juices. Stir to combine. Take a moment to cut the egg omelette into ribbons (see photo above) or smaller pieces if you prefer and stir them into the rice mixture. Cook for a minute or two until everything is heated through and the meat is fully cooked. Taste and adjust seasoning. 
Sprinkle with sliced spring onions and peanuts and serve.


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  2. Hello Zosia, love the Pork Fried Rice with Carrots and Broccoli, it really looks and sounds very delicious, and thank you for your recipe, I hope your Easter was good...


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