Everytime we go out for Chinese, my husband is always ordering moo shu pork. With most restaurants up here, it’s hit or miss. More miss than hit. I don’t know why I have never made it until now. It is a tad ingredient heavy, primarily because I’m making everything from scratch, but nothing that is too overwhelming. You just need to do some prep work ahead of time and it will not seem so daunting. Let’s start with the hoisin sauce.
1 TBSPN peanut butter
1 TBSPN black bean sauce/paste (I used a sesame black bean sauce)
1 TBSPN roasted red chili paste (I used thai kitchen brand)
3 TBSPN lite soy
1 TBSPN honey
1 TBSPN molasses
1 TSPN white grapefruit balsamic (Fustini’s)
1 TSPN rice wine vinegar
2-3 TBSPN ketchup
Few shakes of granulated garlic
Few shakes of hot shot
*Please note that I’m guessing on the measurements. I eyeballed everything when I made this and tasted as I went along until it tasted right*
In a measuring cup, mix together the peanut butter, molasses, honey, chili paste, and ketchup. Mix until well incorporated. Stir in remaining ingredients and chill in the fridge until ready to use. You will want to take it out of the fridge about 30 minutes before serving just to take the chill off.
Not that hard right? Right! Let’s move on to the pancakes. Traditional moo shu pancake recipes are essentially flour, water, and sometimes salt. However, they require rolling of dough and I did not want to do that tonight. So I decided on more of a crepe type batter. This way I can just pour into the pan and cook away. I wanted to keep it somewhat healthy (traditional crepe batters have eggs, flour, milk, and butter) so I took about 1 cup of Fiber One pancake mix, 1 cup of whole wheat flour, 1/2 cup of milk, and water (enough to thin the batter out to the consistency I wanted). That’s it. In a nonstick fry pan or crepe pan if you have one (and actually, I have a crepe pan, but I was too damn lazy to pull it out), put a little sesame oil and a thin layer of batter. Cook until golden brown on one side (about a minute, if that), flip, and cook for about 20 seconds more. Repeat this process until you have a stack of pancakes.
Again, simple right? RIGHT! ; )
*After tasting these, I personally found them to be too pancakish. They were good, they worked, but next time I would go the extra mile and make the traditional moo shu pancakes.*
Now let’s talk pork.
Moo Shu Pork
1 pork tenderloin, about 1 pound, sliced paper thin. (I used my mandoline to do this and sliced it when it was frozen)
Equal parts of oyster sauce, mirin, rice wine vinegar, and about 1-2 tspn of sesame oil (eyeball it, this is what’s going to make your marinade, but be careful to not have it drowning in marinade)
Spoonful of cornstarch (you will just want enough to lightly coat the pork)
6 oz of portobello mushrooms, julienned
3 cloves minced garlic
2 cans of water chestnuts, drained and diced (you are not going to find cans of diced water chestnuts, you will have to do this by hand or in a food processor)
1 can of baby corn, drained and diced up
1-2 cups of cabbage (I used a bagged coleslaw mix)
1 bunch of scallions, chopped
4 beaten eggs
Oyster sauce (to taste)
Thai chili sauce (to taste)
Mr Yoshida’s Original Sauce (to taste)
Rice Wine Vinegar (to taste)
Soy Sauce (to taste)
Small amount of chicken stock
Take the pork and toss with the marinade and the corn starch. Put in the fridge for at least an hour. Take out of the fridge about 20 minutes before you are ready to cook it as you want to take the chill off and this assures that you will not have tough pork.
In a frying pan, drizzle with a little sesame oil and pour the beaten eggs into the pan. DO NOT SCRAMBLE!! Let the eggs set and then flip just like you would a pancake. Finish cooking the other side. Roll the eggs like you would a cigar and then cut into slices. Set aside.
In a wok, drizzle a little sesame oil and cook the pork. You may need to do this in batches as you don’t want to overcrowd the wok. Cook the pork until a nice little crust forms and pork is cooked through. Remove from the wok and set aside.
In the same wok, stir-fry the mushrooms and the cabbage with the chicken stock. You just want enough chicken stock to steam the cabbage a bit. Toss in the rest of the veggies and the garlic and continue to cook for a minute or two. Add in the sauces. I took the soy, the oyster sauce, the rice wine vinegar, the chili sauce, and Mr Yoshida’s Sauce and eyeballed them all. I didn’t use much of any of them, but just enough to give it some flavor. You don’t want this sitting in a sauce because it will turn your pancakes soggy. Plus you are going to have the hoisin sauce adding flavor as well. I just knew when it was right. Taste as you go and you will too.
Toss back in the pork and the egg to warm through.
Jim gave this two platefuls up despite the sub par (I thought they were sub par for my standards, lol) pancakes. Actually, I think the pancakes that I made would be fantastic with Nutella (combined with a little mascarpone) and bananas. So make the pancakes too and then eat them for dessert.