Quick quick hoi sin pork

Whilst I am all for slow cooked braises, blipping away in the oven for hassle free hours to become deeply savoury and yielding, there are times when we need supper in a hurry.  There are many such recipes on these pages* and here is another to add to your repertoire.  Combining those magical sweet, salty spiced flavours from the East, this is lip smacking, satisfying and speedy to boot.

I use pork fillet here which, being lean, lends itself perfectly to a quick stir fry but you could use chicken if you prefer.  I would favour (as ever) skinless thighs over breast though.  For a veggie option I would use big mushrooms sliced and add the cabbage mentioned below to the pan with the mushrooms and sauce.  Apart from the meat or vegetables, this is but a quick rifle around the cupboard plus some ginger and garlic.

For greens I have taken to stir frying some chopped hispi/sweetheart cabbage with either a few bashed sichuan peppercorns or garlic, ginger and chilli.   It cooks in no time and works well with the hoi sin pork, alternatively try the greens with garlic and soy (October 2017).

Hoisin Pork

My children like this served with noodles which I stir into the wok at the end to combine them with the pork and sauce.  I prefer it with rice but, as ever, its up to you.

Thumb size piece of ginger, peeled and grated

1 large clove garlic, peeled and chopped

500g pork loin, cut into pieces the size of your little finger

1 tablespoon oil

100ml hoi sin sauce

1 tablespoon sriracha, or similar chilli sauce

2 tablespoons water

2 tablespoons soy sauce

Chopped coriander (optional, use it if you have some)

Noodles or rice to serve

Put the ginger, garlic, hoi sin, sriracha, water and soy into a bowl and give it a good stir.  Heat the oil in a wok or large frying pan and over a high heat add the pork, leave for a minute to seal then stir fry until coloured on all sides.  Add the sauce and stir for a couple of minutes until the pork is cooked and well coated by sauce.  Don’t cook it for too long or the sauce will reduce too much and become salty.  If you want a little more sauce add a further splash of water.  Serve with noodles or rice and sprinkle with some chopped coriander if you have some.  Enough for two adults and two children.

*Some other top speedy suppers are Claypot chicken (May 2013), Teriyaki chilli salmon (April 2019), Salmon with pickled cucumber (May 2015), Kale, mushrooms and chilli on toast (January 2013), Orzo with bacon, tomato and cream sauce (June 2015), Savoy cabbage with bacon and creme fraiche (February 2015) and those Greens with garlic and soy (October 2017) which I happily have with a pile of rice for a meat free supper – to name but a few.







So many books, so much to cook.

Depending on which way you look at it there is either a ridiculous number of cook books spread over many shelves in our house or a fabulous, varied and absorbing collection.  I know which camp I am in.   Curated in colour order, there is the blue and green set of shelves, the white, black, brown and gold…. you see how it is.  They take it in turns to go from shelf to bedside or sofa side table and ultimately stove side.  If a particular book hasn’t been read in a while then what a treat, it can almost feel like new.  Others, old familiar books are like carrying on a conversation with a friend with memories shared. Rarely do I flick through one without a recipe or two being added to my list.

The list is an ongoing, ever evolving collection of things I want to try, additions are made almost daily and crossed out when tried, changes and ideas annotated where necessary.  Partly out of greed but also in order to justify this vast canon of work – as long as I’ve cooked a recipe or two from each book over the years it has earned its place.  Our weekly menu combines a couple of new ideas alongside old favourites that deserve a re run and guarantee happy faces which a new kid on the block may not.  Some weeks this means a pile of books being juggled other times I chose one book to cook several things from in one week.

What I’m getting at is its good to get new dishes into your repertoire.  We are all pushed for time these days.  Work, children, pets, houses, gardens all demanding more time than is available and as such falling back on the same old same old is often the easy answer.  One new supper idea a week shouldn’t take too much effort and helps shake off the ennui that can arise from cooking supper night after night after night……

So why not grab one of those books you haven’t cooked from in ages.  You never know, you might discover a new favourite, a real keeper.  Failing that I offer three of my super easy and quick, weeknight favourites here which I would love you to try.

Claypot Chicken (May 2013) one of the easiest and most delicious suppers and no you don’t need a claypot, any old pan will do.   Teriyaki Salmon (April 2019)  unbelievably quick and hugely satisfying.   Pasta with Bacon, Garlic, Chilli and Parsley (September 2017) just a fabulous combination.   So do give these a go and there will be a new easy, family friendly recipe along soon.  If you have a bit more time, why not try a new pud……