March 20, 2009

Pork Mince

You can choose between two pork minces (ground for our American friends) at my butcher. One is lean about 90% all meat, the other has white fat specks throughout with a ratio of 70/30 meat to fat. The health conscious part of me thought I really should buy the 'lean' mince but the chef in me knows the 70/30 was going to produce the most flavour for the sausage rolls Max wanted for his birthday party last weekend. I had grand ideas of taking photos of the party food and blogging about it, but I worked all morning at the cafe, came home and started cooking, guests arrived before my pita dough had it's fourth 'rise'- yes, it was all going pear shaped! and that is when I was so happy I'd brought the fatty mince and pre-made the sausage rolls so I could at least offer them to arriving kids and parents.

Now back to my mince. Because it is really inexpensive to buy and so versatile, I grabbed a few extra grams for dinner another night. To me pork is a fantastic white meat, full of flavour, sweet and delicious what ever way you cook it. I didn't really eat it much before moving to the States and now I'm a convert!

The meal above was something I'd thrown together one night after a big day of work and grocery shopping- I know not a glamorous story but one I am sure you can all relate to. I'd decided to make up a little sauce and pour it over the cooked mince and simmer it in the last few minutes before serving with rice. My idea behind this was to get the most flavour out of the dish. I needed to cook the meat right down and get rid of some of the fat and if I had added garlic or ginger to the meat, the flavour would of disappeared with all the liquid in the cooking process. I do like the flavour of the meat when cooking it with diced onion so I combined them in the beginning then once the meat was brown I added finely sliced red cabbage and grated carrot. The sauce I poured over the meat/veg combo was: one part fish sauce, one part black vinegar, one tablespoon brown sugar, 2 garlic cloves minced, about one tablespoon of grated ginger and 2 parts soy sauce. Once mixed together, pour it over the top and stir it in to combine. You will smell the flavours releasing and want to eat it ASAP! Turn the heat off, add some finely chopped coriander (stem and leaves) then serve over rice and finish with some fried shallots if you have them.

Really once all your veggies are chopped, and rice is cooked all you have to do is wait for the meat to cook and you'll be feasting before you know it!

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