Stir-fry Pork with Peapods

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I remember those days a long time ago every time we were in a Chinese restaurant I always wonder how they can cook the meat so tender in such a short time whilst the vegetable remain crisp and the sauce thick and bubbly. I observed firsthand a real northern Chinese cook their veggies (of course, ate Vi our enterpreter here), tried few stir-fry recipes I found online, discovered the technique myself and now I couldn’t stop experimenting w/ different vegetables.
Here’s another easy stir-fry recipe for those like me w/ a busy sched. You may replace the pork here with beef and the cooking time is still the same as long as the meat is thinly sliced.

1/4 kilo lean pork, sliced into thin strips for stir-frying
a handful of sitsaro or peapods
4 tbsps of crushed garlic
1 large onion, sliced
1 large tomato, diced
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 tbsp corn starch
salt & pepper

Marinate the pork with about 5 tbsp of soy while you are preparing all the other ingredients.

In a bowl, mix a cup of water, a pinch of salt and a dash of pepper, cornstarch and the remaining soy sauce. Mix well and set aside.

Heat a tbsp or 2 of soybean oil over moderate heat, add the garlic and cook until golden brown. Add the onions and tomatoes and cook until the tomatoes are crushed. Add in the sitsaro and stir-fry until cooked al-dente. Remove from the wok and set aside.

Add about 2-3 tbsps of oil to wok. Add in the pork strips and stir-fry over high heat for about 3-4 minutes. Add the cooked vegetables and reserved marinade mixture. Mix thoroughly with the pork and stir-fry for a minute or until the sauce thickened. Serve immediately.

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I am not a professional cook. My only claim to having a culinary background is a short stint as my dad’s teen ‘sous chef’ in his carinderia ages ago. Dad ran small eateries since I was a young kid - serving standard ‘turo-turo’ food ranging from the likes of menudo, adobo, pritong isda, dinuguan, binagoongan, bopis, munggo, pinakbet and giniling to merienda fares like goto, ginataan, pancit bihon, halu-halo and saging con yelo.

My father, a farmer in his hometown before working his way to becoming an accountant, definitely influenced my cooking in a lot of ways than I thought. My siblings and I were raised in a backyard full of fruit trees and vegetable garden. We spent weekends and the summer breaks running around with ducks, chickens, goats and pigs. I had wonderful memories of gathering eggs, butchering chickens, selling vegetables and the sweet aroma of preserved fruits. But my love for art led me to a degree in Architecture. Just few months after getting my license, I went abroad and lived independently at age 23. Definitely no maid, no cook, and a totally different food culture. Along the way I met lots of friends and spent what seemed a lifetime learning new tricks and recipes.

Now living in Auckland, I am a work-from-home mum who juggles time between work, fun and family - in pursuit of work-life balance. No matter how busy I am, I love the idea of cooking for my family. My blog chronicles home cooking greatly influenced by life outside my home country from Southeast Asia to Beijing and Auckland. And most of the time, being busy also means easy (sometimes quick), affordable meals.

3 thoughts on “Stir-fry Pork with Peapods

  1. hi iska,

    the best next best thing to a pinoy meal is chinese food. infact right now, beneath my computer mouse is big informative book on chinese cuisine that i have been ‘studying’.
    my faves are crispy peking duck and steamed bean curd rolls.

  2. I have not tried any of the recipes posted in your site, but I think your site is one of the bests that I have seen and read so far. I am sure a lot of your readers would appreciate your updates. Keep up the good work. In the meantime, I am going back to the main page (grin). Nagugutom na ako.

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