Shredded pork with Garlic Sauce (Yu Xiang Rou Si)
I think it's also called "yuxiang rousi," or fish fragrant pork (though it has no fish in it). One of my favorite dishes. I used to order this all the time at a cafe near my school during lunch back in high school. Spicy, savory, sour, and a tad sweet for balance, this Sichuan dish, also popular in Shanghai restaurants, takes a few times to get the balance "just right", but it is totally worth trying.
- 1/2 lb pork cut thin, then into matchsticks, prepped in the usual marinade.
- 1 small onion or 1/2 large onion, sliced thin
- equal amount of wood ear fungus, sliced into ribbons
- equal amount of bamboo shoots, cut into matchsticks
- equal amount of peppers, cut into matchsticks, use a variety you are comfortable with the heat level of, I like using jalepenos
- minced ginger, garlic, thinly sliced scallions
- chili or sesame oil for finishing
- 2 tbsp light soy
- 2 tbsp Chinese black vinegar, or red wine or white vinegar if you don't have black vinegar, use dark brown sugar if you substitute.
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp Shaoxing wine
- 2 tsp cornstarch
- dash white pepper
- 1 tbsp or to taste, garlic chili paste
- pinch MSG
Prep ingredients. In a bowl or cup, mix sauce ingredients. Heat wok, add pork, cook till mid rare. If underpowered, reserve, and bring wok back to high temp. Cook vegetables except scallions. Replace pork if reserved. Add sauce. Heat till thickened, add scallions and a drizzle of chili or sesame oil. Toss through. Serve.
The veg I use here is my favorite combination for this dish, but I've seen places use water chestnuts, baby corn, sliced mushrooms, and even celery in addition to or instead of certain ingredients. I don't care for celery versions. The biggest thing in getting this dish down is learning the proper balance of vinegar to sugar to heat to salt. You can also use this sauce with eggplant and/or deep fried tofu.
I like a lot of sauce when I make this as I really like it on steamed rice. This recipe may be a bit heavy on the sauce for some, so you may want to start with about 3/4's as much sauce.