San Choy Bau

Don’t be intimidated by the longer list of ingredients – you may have a lot of this in your pantry already. This was a last minute make for me, so I had to make some alterations. Not perfect for the flavor profile, but more reflective of what’s actually in my fridge. But if you happen to have bamboo shoots and water chestnuts handy, sub them out for the carrots and celery. This was an awesome and fairly fast lunch for us on a summer day.

San Choy Bau, inspired from Ready, Steady, Spaghetti
3 Tablespoons Chinese oyster sauce
2 teaspoons soy sauce
3 Tablespoons Chinese rice vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons vegetable oil
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
3 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
6 scallions, sliced on the diagonal
1 pound ground pork
1/2 cup grated (or finely diced) carrot
1/2 cup thinly sliced/diced celery (slice the celery in half the long way, then thinly slice)
1 Tablespoon pine nuts (toasted, if you’re an overachiever)
Lettuce leaves – iceberg is great.
For serving: cilantro, basil, mint if you have them handy. Pull out the sweet chile sauce as well as the oyster sauce to taste

1. To make the sauce, combine the oyster and soy sauces, rice vinegar, and sugar in a small bowl and stir until the sugar dissolves.
2. Heat a wok (or large saute pan) over high heat, pour in the vegetable and sesame oils, and swirl to coat the wok. Add the garlic, ginger, and half the scallion and stir-fry for 1 minute. Add the pork and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, or until just cooked, breaking up any lumps.
3. Add the grated carrots, celery, and remaining scallions, the pour in the sauce. Cook for 2 or 3 minutes, or until the liquid thickens up a little. Stir in the pine nuts and remove from heat.
4. Separate the leaves of the lettuce, if you’re an overachiever, trim into cups. Place a little of the pork filling among the lettuce cups and add fresh herbs and sauce as desired.

***If you don’t finish all the pork, it was an awesome filling in the fresh spring rolls. Reinvent those leftovers!

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