Pork is a meat prevalent in many dishes around the world. The majority of countries incorporate Pork into their culture and cooking in a variety of ways. There are a few countries whose primary religion do not partake in the eating of pork and often other meats where the consumption is the lowest. The highest rate of pork consumption actually takes place in China.
To expand on your pork recipe repertoire, we wanted to share these 3 recipes that are delightful and don’t take a culinary degree to bring the taste to your table.
In China, a large movement begin in late 1970’s after the government liberalized agriculture. Now China’s pork consumption accounts for nearly half of the entire world. Pigs in general are avidly found throughout the Chinese culture including Zodiac signs, the character for family, and as part of many celebrations.
From trotter to tail, the Chinese consume the entire hog. Each part of the pig is used in various recipes to be sure that no part is wasted. Pigs are also often kept in Chinese homes because they create manure that fertilizes the family gardens. Some of the most well-known pork recipes are available here in the U.S. as well including Sweet & Sour Pork, Wontons, Dumplings, Chow Mein, and Spring Rolls. Below we have included my favorite recipe for Sweet & Sour Pork.
SWEET AND SOUR PORK (rasamalaysia.com)
1/2 lb. pork tenderloin (cut into bite size pieces)
1/2 green bell pepper (about 2 oz. and cut into pieces)
1/2 red bell pepper (about 2 oz. and cut into pieces)
2 stalks scallions (only the white part, cut into 2 inch length)
1 piece fresh/canned pineapple ring (cut into small pieces)
1 clove garlic (finely chopped)
Oil for frying
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1/2 teaspoon corn starch
1/2 teaspoon rice wine
1/2 cup water
2 oz. all-purpose flour
1 oz. corn starch
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cooking oil
1 small pinch of salt
SWEET AND SOUR SAUCE:
1 1/2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
1 teaspoon plum sauce
1/8 teaspoon Chinese rice vinegar (transparent in color)
1/2 teaspoon Lea & Perrins Worcestershire Sauce
1 teaspoon oyster sauce
1 teaspoon corn starch
1 teaspoon sugar
2 tablespoons water
Cut the pork tenderloin into pieces and marinate with the ingredients for 15-20 minutes.
Mix the sweet and sour sauce ingredients well and set aside.
Strain the dry ingredients of the frying batter and then add in the egg, water, and cooking oil to form a thick batter.
When the pork is well-marinated, transfer the pork pieces into the batter and make sure they are well coated. In a deep skillet, add in the cooking oil enough for deep-frying. Once the oil is hot, deep fry the pork pieces until they turn golden brown. Dish out and drain on paper towels.
Heat up a wok and add in some cooking oil. Add in the chopped garlic and stir fry until light brown, then follow by the bell peppers and pineapple pieces. Stir fry until you smell the peppery aroma from the peppers and then add in the sweet and sour sauce. As soon as the sauce thickens, transfer the pork into the wok and stir well with the sauce. Add in the chopped scallions, do a few quick stirs, dish out and serve hot with steamed white rice.
In the United Kingdom pork is a popular meat used in a large variety of dishes. Similar to America they often roast, fry, and barbecue their pork. Unlike most Americans they also utilize the pork belly frequently, the head for recipes such as Braised Pig’s Head
and Pig’s Head Terrine
. This usage of each part of the pig is often found in fine dining establishments, as well as in the rural homes that often come to mind. One common style of pork not often utilized in American cooking is minced meat. This easy recipe from Chef Jamie Oliver’s collection includes traditional minced pork.
- 1 leek
- 1 Royal Gala apple
- 4 sprigs of fresh thyme
- 500 g minced pork
- ½ teaspoon mustard seeds
- 500 g puff pastry
- 1 large free-range eggs
- Preheat the oven to 200ºC/gas 6.
- Wash, trim and dice the leek, core and dice the apple, then pick the thyme leaves.
- Combine the pork, leek, apple, thyme leaves and mustard seeds in a bowl. Season and set aside.
- Roll out the pastry to 1cm thick and 30 x 34cm. Halve lengthways and place a strip of mince down the center of each.
- Brush the edges with beaten egg, roll up and seal. Brush with more egg, then cut each strip into 3 rolls.
- Score the tops and bake for 20 minutes, or until golden and cooked through.
In Australia, the country is leading the way in pig care. The industry began to phase out sow stall back in 2010 and continues to strive towards breeding contented and healthy pigs. Farmers often recognize the pig as a vital part of their lifestyle. Pig producers use manure and effluent on their farms as fertilizer to improve their pasture and crops, some go a step further and capture the methane gases which are then converted to fuel. Australia’s pig herd health is one of the best in the world, their farms are free of many of the diseases that plague others around the world.
Many recipes traditional to Australia are lighter than some of the heavy American familiar dishes but are quite similar overall. They also utilize many similar styles to the United Kingdom, stemming from their immigration roots just as America employs its cooking styles from a wide variety on influencing countries.
4 Briosche buns
4 Thick Sliced of Australian Leg Ham
4 Slices medium hard cheese (Jarlsberg is traditional)
4 Large Dill pickles, sandwich sliced
½ C Mayonnaise
2 T. Mustard Seed
2 tsp. Olive Oil
- Heat a griddle pan over medium heat and grill the brioche rolls until golden and warmed through. Remove and set aside.
- Use the oil to grill the sliced ham on the griddle for 2 minutes on each side. Turn off the heat and stack the ham into 4 portions and top with Swiss cheese.
- Spread the base of each roll with seeded mustard and the top of each roll with a good dollop of mayonnaise.
- Transfer the grilled ham and cheese onto the base of each roll, top the cheese with a sliced dill pickle.
- Replace the top of the bun and serve immediately
I especially love the Australian Ham Burger, it is delicious and a lighter alternative for the traditional beef burger that is a summer staple. Each culture places different values and usefulness on various animals. Pigs are very popular and valued in so many cultures, even those where it may not be a staple on the dinner table but is within the community. I encourage you to click the links and take a look around at these and other recipes to inspire your taste buds.
When it comes to cooking, it’s a great area to take risks and go outside your comfort zone. Do you have any favorite recipes for pork? We are fans of family traditions here at Broadbent, please share your family favorites.