Sweet and Sour Pork, odd bits

More correctly, this is Sweet and Pungent Pork or Pork with Sweet and Pungent Sauce.

This is not the kind made with canned pineapple and maraschino cherries, (which I think is horrid) but an actual real Chinese recipe from the book pictured below.

In the interest of health, simplicity and because I like it better, I did not batter and deep-fry the pork first.

I used to.This way is just as good and I don’t have to haul 3 cups of hot, smoking oil out to the back garden to toss.

It’s also quicker.

Sweet and Sour Pork

Total time: 25 minutes


  • The pork:
  • 12 – 16 oz (360 – 480gr) lean pork  I used pork tenderloin
  • 1 tbs oil
  • 1 tbs soy sauce
  • 2 tbs chicken stock
  • The sauce:
  • 1 tbs oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tsp minced fresh ginger (2 – 3 thin slices, 1″ (2.5cm) wide)
  • 1/2 large red bell pepper, sliced
  • 1/2 head broccoli, cut into florets
  • 1 medium carrot, cut into matchsticks
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 2 tbs white sugar
  • 4 tbs red wine or sherry vinegar
  • 1 tbs cornstarch (maizena, corn flour) dissolved in
  • 2 tbs chicken stock
  • 2 tsp soy sauce

Sweet & Sour Pork


  • Cut the pork into 1″ (2.5cm) cubes.
  • Heat oil and soy sauce in nonstick skillet.  Add pork and stir-fry 5 minutes.
  • Add chicken stock, reduce heat to low, cover and simmer 10 minutes or until done.
  • Dissolve cornstarch in chicken stock, soy sauce and set aside.
  • In large nonstick skillet heat remaining 1 tbs oil over medium-high heat.
  • Add garlic, ginger and stir-fry 30 seconds.
  • Add carrot, broccoli, pepper and stir-fry 2 – 3 minutes.
  • Add stock, sugars, vinegar and soy sauce and bring to a boil, stirring until sugar is dissolved.
  • Give cornstarch a stir to recombine and add to sauce, stirring until thickened.
  • Remove pork from pan juices and add to sauce.
  • Stir well, heat through and serve.

Print Recipe

Okay…. I bought a few things. Yes, even Kikkoman less salt soy sauce and black-eyed beans (peas?)


And this is the book that is going to help me use it all and inspire me to get even more adventurous.

Chinese Cookbook

After that I have one on the Foods of Asia – Indian, Thai, Vietnamese as well as Chinese and Japanese.

I’m so excited…..

In the meantime, here are a few odd bits that entertained me while I mowed the lawn today.

1. Remember the Chocolate Fair that is near and dear to my heart?

Next weekend there is an Eroticism Fair. The billboards show a very attractive couple sporting a tiny bit of black leather – some on their persons, some in the, uh, paraphernalia in their hands. I also spotted some chains. There is an 11 euro entrance fee.

Unfortunately, since we’ve just been to Bordeaux we won’t be able to make it.

2. I cleaned my computer yesterday. After the failure of my router I thought a cleaning was in order. Those of you not living in a construction site, heated with wood fires, with 2 active dogs in the middle of a wet, muddy winter probably don’t need to do that.

I do.

I take it out to the barn, take the case off and blow it out with the air compressor. The amount of dirt and dust that comes out is amazing – and a little scary. I do it every 2 months.

I think I need to do it more often in winter.

3. I just saw a blurb on an ‘easy way to wash your fruit’. Put all of your fruit in a sink full of water with a cup of vinegar and soak for 10 minutes. Then dry and enjoy.

Are you kidding me?

How have I managed to live as long as I have without knowing / doing this!

If it’s fruit I pick myself I brush the dirt off and check for bird shit before eating. If it’s fruit I buy I rinse it with tap water if the opportunity presents itself. Oh, and I always check for slugs and snails on the cabbages, broccoli, chard, etc. I hate that telltale crunch from a missed baby snail.

4. I’ve seen a few blurbs recently about people being concerned about other people ‘licking their fingers’ or licking spoons or sharing a fork or drinking out of the same bottle…. Usually it’s ‘gross’ or ‘ewwwww’ or ‘yuck, think of the germs’.

What are the chances that any of these people will overcome their sensibilities enough to kiss another person, or, heaven forbid, to procreate?

On the other hand…. probably just as well.

What is it with this excessive cleanliness / germ phobia that is so prevalent now?

Didn’t any of these people make mud pies when they were kids?

4 thoughts on “Sweet and Sour Pork, odd bits”

  1. I might rinse my fruit if I have the chance, I don’t rinse veggies at all except for leeks because I hate the grit that settles between the layers, but really? I’m with you. If people are that against germs of any kind, they need to stop shaking hands, quit using public restrooms, stop taking mints out of the bowl at the restaurant when they leave, don’t kiss anyone, don’t use a taxi, I could go on and on and on….and I’m going to try this recipe. 🙂

    I love the results of your non-shopping trip too! The things I could make…

  2. You find this true in France, as well? I thought the excessive cleanliness was an American trait only. It all seems silly to me, but then I did make mud pies as a kid. 🙂 And I have always slept with my cats. My dogs are always too big to sleep in the bed, otherwise they’d be there, too. Here in America, you can’t even bring your dog to most restaurants – I guess people are worried about their germs? Happily, we have two restaurants in our town with outdoor decks where dogs are allowed.

  3. nightsmusic, I’m amazed that there is any procreation going on at all. There are actually special soaps for washing vegetables… wash mushrooms?!? I wash my own lettuce – to get the critters off.

    Kate, and I sit on the floor / ground and roll around with them.

    Zoomie, no, not in France. Here I actually find snails and slugs in the produce I buy at the supermarket…. Can you imagine that in the U.S.? A fly in your soup? Flick it out!

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