A sweet and spicy family-friendly meal!
This dish is a great way to stretch a smaller amount of meat to feed a group of people. It’s ideal for inexpensive cuts of pork but would also be great with chicken or beef. You can use fresh, frozen or canned pineapple pieces and vary the vegetables depending upon what you have on hand (using red peppers or zucchini in place of the green pepper, for example), making it a good ‘clean out the fridge’ meal. The sauce has just a gentle hint of spice but if your family likes things with a little more kick, feel free to stir in little sweet chili sauce or Sriracha near the end, or serve them on the side. Once you’ve prepared your ingredients, this dish comes together in just 20 minutes.
- 1 1/2 pounds (700 g) pork (pork chops are ideal but loin steaks or tenderloin work also)
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) each sea salt and black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) chili pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) smoked paprika
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) + 2 teaspoons (10 mL) cornstarch
- 1/4 cup (60 mL) canola oil, divided
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 1 medium carrot, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) white wine or apple juice
- 1/2 cup (125 mL) chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) rice vinegar
- 1 tablespoon (15 mL) maple syrup or honey
- 1 cup (250 mL) small pineapple pieces (save the juice)
- 1 green pepper, diced
- Sweet chili sauce or Sriracha, to taste (optional)
- Minced green onions and/or chopped cashews or sesame seeds, to garnish
- 3 cups (750 mL) hot cooked rice, to serve
- Cut pork into bite-sized pieces. Combine the salt, chili powder, paprika, ginger and cornstarch in a bag or wide, shallow dish. Toss pork pieces, in batches, in the spice and cornstarch mixture and transfer to a clean plate.
- Place a broad skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons (30 mL) of the canola oil to the pan and let it heat for a minute. Add half the coated pork to the skillet. Sear until golden brown; turn pieces over and cook 2 – minutes more. Remove to a clean plate.
- Add remaining oil to the skillet. Add remaining coated pork pieces to the pan and sear, as above. Remove from skillet and add to first batch when cooked.
- Add diced onion and sliced carrot to the same skillet. Cook, stirring often, for 3 – 4 minutes, until softened. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute more.
- Add white wine (or apple juice) and cook for 2 minutes, stirring up any browned bits on the bottom.
- Stir in chicken broth, soy sauce, rice vinegar and maple syrup. Return pork to the skillet. Stir in a little sweet chili sauce or Sriracha if desired; taste and adjust seasonings if needed.
- Measure reserved pineapple juice and add enough water to make 1/4 cup (60 mL). In a small bowl, stir together the pineapple juice and remaining 2 teaspoons (10 mL) cornstarch. Stir this mixture into skillet and bring to a boil. Add pineapple pieces and diced peppers. Cover pot, reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer for 5 minutes.
- Divide hot, cooked rice among 6 serving bowls. Top with pork mixture and pan sauce then garnish as desired.