Wednesday, January 20, 2010

January Challenge: Mu Shu Pork

Okay I am probably thinking the same thing as many of those who are reading this post. What the HECK IS THAT?! or is it more of a.. UMMM, is that meat fully cooked?! Well to answer the first question; this masterpiece that Blake and I and his mom put together is known as Mu Shu Pork. Mu Shu is probably some Chinese name considering this recipe came out of a Chinese cookbook. But for me, as an American, when I hear the words mu shu, this picture is exactly what I picture in my creative little brain. And it is simply that; a bunch of mush, mu, and shu. And as the second question goes, YES the meat is fully cooked. As I do agree the light colors in the meat tend to make it look a bit on the raw side, I am one hundred percent certain that the pork is fully cooked and completely safe to eat.
This "mush" however is much more intricate than it may appear. Lots of planning, chopping, tearing, slicing, soaking, searching, and burning went into this Asian centered dinner. Not only were two grocery runs made that day, but because of this oily and eggy dish, Blake and I have become quite fond of our matching bubbly burn spots that have decided to move in and hang around for a little while on the sides of our arms. It was all worth it however in the end when we were finally able to bite into this savory and extremely flavorful dish while sharing the experience and taste with his family.
8 dried medium-size mushrooms
2 teaspoon cornstarch
2 tablespoon each say sauce and white wine
1 pound boneless lean pork, cut into matchstick pieces
7 tablespoons canola oil
5 whole green onions
8 eggs, lightly beaten with 1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 cup sliced bamboo shoots
2 small carrots shredded
4 cups shredded iceberg lettuce
Hoisin sauce
mandarin pancakes (recipe follows)
For cooking sauce:
2 tablespoons each soy sauce, white wine, water
2 teaspoons each sugar, cornstarch, sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cover mushrooms with warm water and let stand for 30 minutes and then drain. Cut off the stems and thinly slice rest of mushroom. In bowl combine cornstarch, soy, and wine. Add pork and stir to coat. Stir in 3 teaspoons of the oil. Let stand for 15 minutes to marinate. Prepare cooking sauce and set aside. Cut onions in 1.5 inch lengths, then cut lengthwise in thin shreds. Heat a wok or wide frying pan over medium-high heat. When pan is hot, add two tablespoon of oil. When oil is hot, add eggs (WARNING: SERIOUS BURNS MAY OCCUR) and cook, stirring, until softly set; then turn eggs out of pan. Heat the remaining tablespoons oil in pan and increase heat to high. When oil begins to heat, add ginger and stir. Add pork and stir-fry until meat is lightly browned (about four min.) Add mushrooms and stir-fry one min. Add bamboo shoots, carrot, lettuce, green onion, and cooking sauce and cook, stirring, until lettuce is crisp-tender (about 2 min.) Add scrambled eggs to pan and break into bite-size pieces as you stir them into the meat mixture. When eggs are hot, turn into serving dish and serve wrapped up in mandarin pancakes or with white rice and enjoy! Add hoisin sauce if you please.

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