Anyone who knows me knows that I have a thing for pork.
A VERY big thing for pork.
While it is not something that we eat every day, it is definitely something that we very much enjoy in our household. Whether in a stir fry, mother’s signature bistake or the legendary black pork curry, we are also lovers of pork ribs, BBQed pork chops and even pork sandwiches!
And contrary to the belief of many, pork is healthier than you may believe. It is on top of doctors’s lists as one of the most healthiest meats out there. Considered as the new “white meat” lean pork cuts such as tenderloin, loin chops and sirloin roast are lower in calories and fat than all other meat and yes, and get this, it is even healthier than chicken breast (weightwatchers ahoy!).
While containing massive amounts of protein, pork meat also contains large amounts of Zinc, B vitamins such as Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Thiamin, Niacin, Riboflavin and Pantothenic Acid and iron while containing more unsaturated fats than saturated fats when compared with other meats. It also contains conjugated linoleic acid, something that is considered to be beneficial against cancer or cardiovascular disease.
And let us not forget the taste. *slobbers*
I honestly don’t understand why certain cultures would ban pork – such a gloriously rich meat. Probably because it is SO good?
Bottom line, trimmed of the fatty bits, pork meat is even leaner than the leanest chicken breast, rich with essential nutrients, amino acids and minerals such as Phosphorus, Selenium, Sodium, Zinc, Potassium and Copper.
But we like our fatty bits a little too well now, don’t we? ;)
So this is my tribute to pork and it works best with the fatty bits on. Marinated overnight and cooked over a slow fire, swathed in aromatic spices and juices, the meat literally melts in the mouth. A favourite household recipe, from me to you with love.
Sri Lankan Pork stir fry
- Pork - 1 KG, cubed to about 1 inch pieces
- Onion - 5, large
- Garlic - 1 tblsp, minced
- Ginger - 1 tsp, minced
- Pepper - 2 tblsps
- Capsicum - 1, large, green
- Cardamom - 6 pods
- Cinnamon - Few pieces
- Cloves - 6-8
- For the marinade
- Dark soy sauce - 8 tblsps
- Brown sugar - 3 tblsps
- Salt & pepper - To taste
- Wash the pork and place it in a non-reactive bowl. Add the sugar and the soy sauce and sprinkle some salt over it. Mix well with hands. Leave to marinate overnight in a fridge.
- Heat a pan and toss the marinated pork into it. Add the cardamom, cinnamon, clove and the garlic, the onions and the ginger. Cook the pork in its own juices until the broth thickens.
- Add the capsicum. Sautee until fragrant.
- Serve warm.
Yes as simple as that! And the taste of the dish is simply incomparable.
The first thing that hits you is the smell. The cinnamon, cardamom, the clove, garlic and ginger all amalgamate with the soy sauce to create a perfume that you’d crave to bathe your taste buds in. The pieces of fatty pork (I insist on using the juicy fatty pork for this dish), are swathed in a dark soy sauce seeped in Sri Lankan spices sprinkled over with dark pepper granules. An ethereal experience awaits as you bite in, the moist meat squirting velvety juices while the spices merge and mingle and come together in the perfect fragrant marriage that delights the senses. The pepper surprises your tongue, cutting through the rich, dark broth with loud bursts of flavour, shocking you, delighting you. Hearty, luscious and absolutely decadent, these juicy pork bites bathed in perfumed silk freckled with piquant black pepper is suited for any occasion, to be served with rice, bread or simply to be gobbled down by itself.
Really, let go of your prejudices. Rejoice in this delicious meat that should be respected for what it is.
- Use pork that has some amount of fat o them. This somehow works best for this dish.
- Marinate overnight when possible. If not marinate for at least 4 hours before you cook the dish.
- I used maalu miris in this dish but removed the pips before using it. They are homegrown so there was no need to spend on the fancy capsicums.