Saturday, February 15, 2014

Recipe for Easy Stir Fry with Pork and Veggies

Stir Fry with Pork and Veggies
This Stir Fry with Pork and Veggies is ultra easy.  If you don't do pork, substitute chicken or tofu.

(Updated with better photos and step-by-step instructions February 2014.)   For me this was one of those weeks where I was glad when it ended!  First of all I woke up sick on Monday and all week I've been coughing, congested, and feeling low energy.  Maybe that's the reason every new recipe idea I've tried has either been a complete flop or something that I know can be good but needs more work.  I'd say the cooking highlight of the week was re-doing the photos for this Stir Fry with Pork and Veggies that I first made back in 2007, and even though I was sick it tasted good too.  I used pork, but you could also make it with chicken, tofu, or just stir-fry the veggies.

This isn't an authentic Chinese recipe, but you'll still get better results if you use the right techniques.  Many years ago I took a class in Chinese cooking, and learned the following principles about how to stir-fry, which have really helped me make great Chinese dishes:

Principles of Chinese Cooking

  1. Preheat the wok (before you put the oil in).
  2. Season the oil (with whole pieces of garlic and ginger root, which you remove when you add the food to be cooked, or tiny minced pieces which only get cooked for a few minutes before the other food is added).
  3. Symmetry of cut (all pieces must be cut the same size and shape).
  4. Have all ingredients cut and sauces mixed before you cook.
  5. Use very high heat and cook fast.

Whisk together the sugar-free apricot preserves, soy sauce, and cornstarch or arrowroot powder (if using) to make the sauce.

Cut the broccoli into small bite-sized pieces and cut the sugar snap peas and red pepper strips into same-size strips.

Cut up the pork chops into thin strips.  (Next time I might make them even thinner!)

Preheat the wok or frying pan before you add the oil.

Add the oil and heat for about 30 seconds, then add the pork (chicken or tofu) and stir-fry about 3 minutes. 

Remove pork, add a little more oil, and cook the minced garlic for just a few seconds.

Then add the broccoli, sugar snap peas, red pepper strips, and green onion (if using.)  Stir fry about 3 minutes.

Add the pork back to the wok and cook about a minute.

Then add the sauce and cook 1-2 minutes until it thickens and coats the food.  Serve hot.

And just for fun, here's the original photo for this recipe from back in 2007.  I guess I was into close-ups in those days!


Stir Fry with Pork and Veggies
(Makes 2-3 servings, recipe adapted from The South Beach Diet Quick and Easy Cookbook

Ingredients:
1/2 cup sugar free apricot preserves (I used Smucker's Sugar Free Apricot Preserves)
3 T soy sauce
1 tsp. cornstarch or arrowroot starch (optional, but it will make a slightly thicker sauce)
2 T peanut oil, (could use canola oil or grapeseed oil but I prefer peanut oil for stir frying)
2 pork chops, cut into small very thin strips
(You could also use strips of chicken or small cubes of extra-firm tofu)
1 tsp. minced garlic
2-3 cups broccoli flowerets, cut in small bite size pieces
1 red bell pepper, cut into short thin strips
1 cup sugar snap peas, trimmed and cut in half lengthwise
4 green onions, cut into 1 inch diagonal pieces (optional)

Instructions:
Whisk together apricot preserves, soy sauce, and cornstarch or arrowroot starch (if using) and set aside.  Cut up the pork (chicken or tofu), broccoli, red pepper, sugar snap peas, and green onions (if using.)

Heat wok or frying pan over high heat about 1 minute. Add 1 T oil and heat about 30 seconds, then add pork (chicken or tofu) and stir fry, stirring frequently, until lightly browned and no longer pink. If your heat is high enough this will only take about 3 minutes. Remove to a plate.

Add second T of oil, heat a few seconds, then add garlic and cook 20-30 seconds. (Don't let it get brown.) Add broccoli, peppers, sugar snap peas, and green onions (if using) and stir fry for about 3 minutes. Then add meat and cook 1 minute more

Add soy sauce mixture and cook 1-2 minutes more, until sauce thickens slightly. 
Serve hot, over brown rice or Uncle Ben's Converted Rice if desired.


South Beach Suggestions:
In the cookbook, this is considered a phase two recipe even when it's served without rice, since even the sugar-free apricot preserves have quite a bit of natural sugar.   I wouldn't worry about using such a small amount of cornstarch or arrowroot starch, especially for a recipe that's phase two, but don't overdo it on the serving size.

Nutritional Information?
I chose the South Beach Diet to manage my weight partly so I wouldn't have to count calories, carbs, points, or fat grams, but if you want nutritional information for a recipe, I recommend entering the recipe into Calorie Count, which will calculate it for you.

More Stir-Fries You Might Like:
(Recipes from other blogs not always South Beach Diet friendly; check ingredients.)
Spicy Vegan Peanut Butter Tofu with Sriracha ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Stir-Fried Pork with Black Beans and Green Beans ~ View World Kitchen
Stir-Fried Turkey (or chicken) with Snow Peas and Peppers ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
Chinese Stir-Fried Tofu with Pork and Vegetables ~ Use Real Butter
Garlic Lover's Vegetable Stir Fry with Eggplant, Zucchini, and Yellow Squash ~ Kalyn's Kitchen
(Want even more recipes? I find these recipes from other blogs using Food Blog Search.)
Blogger Disclosures:
This recipe was first posted for Sweetnicks ARF/5-A-Day event in February 2007.

Posts may include links to my affiliate account at Amazon.com, and Kalyn's Kitchen earns a few cents on the dollar if readers purchase the items I recommend, so thanks for supporting my blog when you shop at Amazon!
counter customizable free hit

17 comments:

  1. This sounds great. I'm going to try this one! I'm also glad to hear you like the Quick & Easy Cookbook. I've been considering getting that one.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Looks beautiful. I don't do pork, but I like the addition of apricot preserves in the stir-fry sauce. My mouth is watering - !

    ReplyDelete
  3. Jill and Karina, the simple combination of the apricot preserves and soy sauce was really amazingly good. I'm going to use it on lots of other things for stir frying, I can tell.

    ReplyDelete
  4. You have a real wok?! Wow! I'm intimidated by stir-frying...I know it's silly of me!

    Lisa

    ReplyDelete
  5. Lisa, when you and Rorie come to Utah and stay at my house I will give you stir fry lessons. Veggie even. Sound good?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Yum! That looks so good! I never got the stir-frying down, always overcook or don't let the pan get hot enough. Thanks for the tips. I'll have to check out the cookbook too.

    ReplyDelete
  7. This was great. I didn't have apricot preserves so I used orange marmalade. Turned out delicious!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I just made this and it was the best stir fry I ever had. I made thid with bok choy and quorn (vegetarian chicken) - the results were fabulous - the sauce is incredible!

    ReplyDelete
  9. Amber so glad you liked it, and good to hear that it works well with a veggie meat option too!

    ReplyDelete
  10. This looks great! I have been sick too all week and my meals have been less than great because I can't taste a thing! Here's to a better healthy week!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Mom on the Run, I am totally in favor of a better week this week, and I'm finally starting to feel better.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Re your 2007 close-up photo: I've quit following quite a few food bloggers because their photos were way too close on EVERY dish, and I couldn't take it any more. :) This stir-fry sounds (and now looks) delicious, I look forward to trying it.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Jeanne, I think those close-up macro shots were all the rage for a while, but I agree sometimes they can be a bit much!

    ReplyDelete
  14. Kalyn, my friend and I made this on the weekend and we both LOVED it. So tasty and easy (my favourite combination!). We've made quite a few of your recipes over the years for our healthy cooking get-togethers, and my friend commented that you're "batting 400" and we've never been disappointed once. I've been very remiss in commenting and letting you how much I love your blog. So thank you for all your hard work and awesome recipes! :)

    ReplyDelete
  15. Keira, thanks for taking time to leave that nice feedback; I am so glad the recipes are working well for you!

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for joining the conversation! I love hearing from readers and even though I can't always reply to every comment, I will always answer specific questions on a recipe as soon as possible. Sometimes I'm answering by iPhone, so my replies may be short!

Comments don't appear on the blog until they're approved by me, so no need to try again if you don't see it! Feel free make your signature a link to your site if you're a blogger, but links posted within the body of the comment will never be published.

Blogging tips