Friday, June 17, 2011

Taiwanese Minced Pork with Fried Shallots, Shiitake Mushrooms & Soy Sauce over Rice (Rou Zhao / Lu Rou Fan) or Noodles (Rou Zhao Mian)

Another fav Taiwanese dish that I grew up eating. It's super easy to make - in fact, the only thing you can do wrong is to add too much soy sauce, rendering the dish too salty. That's why I like erring on the side of less soy to begin with, 'cause you can always add more later. This is not a dish meant to be eaten on its own: it should be served over hot fluffy white rice (preferably the CalRose type of short grain white rice) or noodles. The last time I cooked this, I tried to go healthy and served it over a multi-grain/brown rice blend, but it just wasn't the same...I've concluded that life is too short to deprive myself of all things delicious, so just sticking with the mantra 'everything in moderation.'

2 lbs. ground pork (do not use the extra lean stuff or the meat will be tough-you can always skim off the excess fat later. 85-15 ground turkey is a good substitute)
2 cloves garlic, minced
3/4 cup fried shallots
4-5 shiitake mushrooms, soaked in hot water and finely diced
2 tbsp. rice wine
3/4 cup soy sauce
1 1/2 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. five spice powder
3 cups water (or more, as needed)

1. Heat 1 tbsp. vegetable oil in a saute pan over medium-high heat. Add minced garlic and ground pork and cook until meat is browned. 

2. Add fried shallots and diced shiitake mushrooms and stir well. 

3. Stir in soy sauce, rice wine sugar, and 5 spice powder. Reduce heat to medium, and cook about 1 minute. 

4. Add water, lower heat to simmer & cover. Cook about 20 minutes to reduce the liquid by about 1/3. 

5. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Serve over hot white rice. 

Soak 4-5 dried shiitake mushrooms in very hot water until softened, about 30 minutes. 

2 lbs. ground pork.

Clockwise from bottom left: sugar, soy sauce, fried shallots, diced shiitakes, rice wine, 5-spice powder.

Saute the minced garlic in 1 Tbsp. vegetable oil, then add ground pork and brown.

Add fried shallots and diced shiitakes.

Stir in soy sauce, rice wine, sugar, and 5-spice powder.

Add 3 cups of water.

Cover, lower heat, and simmer about 20 minutes or until liquid is reduced by 1/3. 

Skim off any excess fat from the top before serving. Serve over white rice with halved or quartered boiled eggs and pickled daikon radish slices.

Can also be served over noodles.

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