Kick your weeknight dinner up a notch with Emeril’s Sweet & Sour Pork. ThIs pork is seasoned with Emeril’s famous Essence (see the recipe below) and tossed in a deliciously sweet sauce with green pepper, onion, carrots, and fresh pineapple — BAM! Stir fry is one of my favorite weeknight meals to prepare. Chop some veggies, simmer a little sauce, toss it all in the wok, and you’ve got a quick, delicious meal.
Don’t let the ingredient list on this recipe scare you–most are dried spices you probably already have on hand. The ESSENCE makes more than you’ll need for this dish, so store it and try it as a rub the next time you fire up the grill.
TIP: Emeril’s original recipe calls for adding 2 teaspoons of red pepper flakes to the sauce, but I thought the Essence made the dish spicy enough for my taste. If your family likes more spice, then by all means add some red pepper flakes. Enjoy!
- 1/2 cup pineapple juice
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup water
- 4 teaspoons soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon ginger
- 2 teaspoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons sherry
- 2 tablespoons peanut or vegetable oil
- 1 pound lean pork shoulder cubed
- 2 teaspoons Essence recipe follows
- 1 green bell pepper stemmed and seeded, cut into strips
- 1/2 medium yellow onion thinly sliced
- 2 cups cubed pineapple
- 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
- 2 tablespoons salt
- 2 tablespoons garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
- 1 tablespoon dried leaf oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
Whisk together pineapple juice, ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, water, soy sauce, and sesame oil. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon olive oil over and sauté the ginger and garlic for 15 seconds. Add the pineapple juice mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and stir until the sugar dissolve.
In a small bowl, dissolve the cornstarch in the sherry. Whisk into the sauce; reduce heat and simmer until slightly thickened -- just a couple of minutes. Remove from the heat.
Season the pork with the Essence. In a wok or large saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over high heat. Add the pork and stir fry until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain the pork on paper towels.
Add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the wok and stir fry the bell peppers, onions, and carrots, about 2-3 minutes. Add the pork and stir fry another 4-5 minutes. Add the sauce and pineapple stirring, until warmed through and thickened, 1 minute.
Combine all ingredients thoroughly and store in an airtight jar or container.
Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch. Published by William and Morrow, 1993.