Harvesting Time!

20160325_104518Always a slight challenge to buy basil at marts. Many do not stock basil and prices can be high if you manage to find any. Basil is also not an ingredient you could use in every dish hence the remaining unused portions often go bad before I can utilize for my next dish.  SO I decided to grow it!

After 2 months of nurturing and loads of sun, my leafy friend whom painstakely grew from seed to plant, was finally ready for harvesting. And Mr Basil grew on organic soil as well. Happy to snip what I need and main stem produces new shoots month after month.

Today I did a simple dish yet earthly Stir Fried Basil Pork In Oyster Sauce.

imageMy preference is minced pork or boneless chicken leg however used sliced pork meat for first in first out reasons.

imageMarinate pork with sesame oil, salt, white & black pepper, shaoxing wine, fish sauce and cornstarch. Leave it for roughly 30 mins. Always ensure meat is drained off any excess juices before marination. You may do so by placing e meat on a metal strainer for 5 mins.

imageSlice up half white onion (not in pic), carrots, roughly 6 basil leaves, spring onion, padi (removed seeds), garlic and corriander to garnish.

imageI always prepare my sauce in advance instead of fumbling with bottles and portioning while cooking. The sauce consists of shaoxing wine, fish sauce, oyster sauce, sugar and sesame oil.

The cooking process for this dish had to be rushed as retention of pork juices using high fire cooking was essential hence hardly had time for in between shots.

Step by Step

1. Heat up your non stick pan or chinese wok. Oil it and carry on till smoke emits. It has to be Piping Hot before cooking.

2. Throw in your garlic and carrots into e raw meat bowl. Reason why I don’t stir fry the garlic first as they would brown fast on high heat resulting in bitter bits of charred garlic.

3. Toss all e meat, garlic and carrots into pan. Stir fry. Don’t worry if short bursts of flames appear. No need to dial 995. Just stir fry further to diffuse any flames.

4. Once meat is slightly browned. Throw in onions, basil, padi, spring onion. Sautee/Stir fry to blend with meat.

5. Lovely Basil Aromas should fill kitchen air by now. Once meat is 85% cooked, put in blend of sauces prepared earlier. Stir fry & allow to cook for 2- 3 mins.

6. Plate, garnish and serve.

imageYou should find pork slices juicy and filled with moisture. Obviously it would be ideal to have zi char stoves with volcano heat but as long as you leave your home stove fire on max capacity, and have confidence to leave it high from start to finish.. most meat dishes will turn out fine.

Readers emailed me to say they turned e heat down halfway “scared overcook”, Mistake Folks..

Moments after you turn your fire down, meat juices seep out slowly rendering it dry/rubbery.

Enjoy! 😃

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