Thursday, February 21, 2013

Pork and Peanut Stir-Fry

You can use whatever meat you want with this – IGA’s turkey breast or chicken leg quarters, or Marsh’s pork. Let’s go with the pork, shall we? Pork is so good in a stir-fry and goes well with peanuts, too. You can use pretty much any vegetables you have on hand. I just chose these because they’re on sale and the colors look nice together. Broccoli, cabbage, and cauliflower are good in a stir-fry, too, as are fresh green beans, tomatoes, zucchini, etc. Pretty much anything goes.

2 lbs pork spareribs
3 T oil
2 peppers
3 carrots
8 oz mushrooms
2 onions
PEANUT SAUCE (recipe follows)

Start by preparing the meat and vegetables. It goes together quickly once you start cooking, so you want to have everything ready before you start.

To Prepare Ingredients:
Remove the meat from the bones and cut it into thin slices, about 1/2”x1/2”x2.” Basically, you want matchstick shaped pieces, as tall as they are wide. The length of the pieces will depend on the size and shape of the pork chops. Set the pork aside. Save the bones to make bone broth.

Remove the seeds and stem from the peppers and slice them about the same size as the pork strips. Peel the carrots and cut them on the diagonal into 1/2” slices. Peel the onions, halve them through the stem and root ends, and cut them into 1/2” slices. Clean the mushrooms (the experts say to wipe them with a damp cloth, but I rub them gently under running water) and slice them into 1/2” thick slices. If the mushrooms are big, halve them before slicing.

Make the PEANUT SAUCE (recipe below)

To Cook the Stir-Fry:
Heat the oil in a big skillet or wok. When it’s hot, add the meat and keep it moving around in the pan until it’s done. Not necessarily browned, just done. Remove the meat. Add the carrots and onions to the oil and drippings in the skillet and toss them around for a couple of minutes, then add the mushrooms and peppers. Remember you want the meat in a stir-fry to be crisp-tender, and they’ll cook a little bit more after you add the meat and sauce. (If you like your veggies soft, go for it! Just cook them a few minutes longer. I won’t tell.) Add the meat and sauce and toss it over the heat just until the meat is heated through and the sauce is evenly distributed. Add water a tablespoon at a time if you need to thin the sauce.

(A Cookbook for the Financially Challenged, by Alexandra Pauley)

½ c smooth peanut butter
2 T soy sauce
2 t minced garlic (or 1 T garlic powder)
1 t chili powder
1 t minced fresh ginger (or 1 t powdered ginger)

Combine everything and pour it over the cooked meat and vegetables. Toss well to coat. You may need to add a bit of water to thin it, but wait and see how it works once it’s on the meat and vegetables. There may be enough moisture in them to thin it enough.

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