Braised Minced Pork Rice

Yesterday I had a suddenly craving for braised minced pork so I went to the supermarket to buy the ingredients right after work. One of the key ingredients is the Chinese dried mushroom, and I was lucky enough to get hold of the last packet on the shelf. An elder lady who also wanted to buy the mushrooms saw that I had the last packet and asked if I could let her have it. I struggled for a few seconds, thinking if I should give up the mushrooms, in the end, the food devil won. I apologized to the lady and told her that I needed it to cook dinner so I could not give it to her. She seemed a bit disappointed though. Oh well, blame my food devil!

And so, I’ve got all the ingredients needed, and went ahead to cook the braised minced pork.

Here’s the required ingredients list:
– 450g of minced pork
– chopped/minced ginger (about 2 teaspoons)
– 3 cloves of garlic (chopped)
– 15 Chinese mushrooms (soaked in water, sliced and drained)
– 1/2 tbsp of cooking oil (reduce the amount according to preference)
– 3/4 tbsp of sesame oil
– 3 tbsp of dark soy sauce (increase the amount according to preference)
– 2 tbsp of light soy sauce (adjust the amount according to preference)
– 2 teaspoons of sugar
– 2 teaspoons of five spice powder (Star anise, cloves, Chinese cinnamon, Sichuan pepper and ground fennel seeds)
– 2 teaspoons corn starch
– some grounded white pepper
– 2 cups of water
– 2 stalks of green onions (chopped for garnish)

Directions:

1) Marinate the minced pork with the corn starch, grounded white pepper, 1/4 tbsp of sesame oil, and 1 tbsp of light soy sauce. Keep it in the fridge for about 30mins. This step is important as it gets the flavor into the meat, especially if you use frozen minced pork.

2) Heat up the cooking oil and remaining sesame oil in a pan. Sauté garlic and ginger until fragrant but avoid too much browning.

3) Add in the minced pork and stir fry it. Try to break up the lumps as much as possible otherwise you will get big chunks of meat in the end.

4) When most of the meat has turned grey, add in the drained mushroom slices, dark soy sauce, remaining light soy sauce, and five spice powder. Stir fry for 1 – 2 minutes and pour in the water and sugar.

5) At this point, I transfer the mixture into a pot to simmer.

6) Allow it to simmer for about 20 mins and it is ready to be served.

For this dish, the longer the simmering time, the better the taste. So you can actually leave it in the slow cooker. If you like more gravy, simply add more water and adjust the amount of soy sauces and sugar according to your preference. Or, you can add hard boiled eggs in to simmer as well. For thicker gravy, you can mix some corn starch with water and add into the gravy while simmering.

Lastly, serve the braised meat with white rice/noodles/vermicelli and garnish with green onions. Enjoy! =)

Here’s a closer look at the dish.

See how well the rice absorbs the gravy?
Oh my… I am drooling again! =P

I cooked a pot of the braised meat so that I could use them to make my lunch today. So Dad, Pakcik, and I have braised meat bento for today~

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