Vietnamese Rice Bowls with Caramelized Pork

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I always forget about stir fry. I don’t know why, because I love pretty much every vegetable and I’m always looking for healthy options to break up the weekly meal plan. It just keeps flying under my radar. My Main Taste Tester loves stir fry and it is one of the few foods that he likes to make, along with homemade burgers and chili. He is always challenging me to a chili cook off, and I feel like that’s finally going to happen this summer.  We are both super competitive when we make chili. Weird, and off topic. Back to stir fry. I saw a similar recipe on a food blog I follow recently and I thought it looked different than anything we’d had before. I made it last week for supper with several modifications and turned it into a rice bowl. After I served it, all I could hear were loud “MMMMMM” noises coming from my MTT’s direction. He’s been asking me to make it every day since and I’m already looking forward to it too. It’s done in 30 minutes, healthy, super flavorful and easy to switch up. I want to make it with shrimp next and I think quinoa or noodles would be great in place of the brown rice. I guess I win this round but the jury is still out on who makes better chili. Who wants to judge?

 Vietnamese Rice Bowls with Caramelized Pork

Serves 4-6

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups dry brown jasmine rice
  • 1.5 pounds pork tenderloin, cubed
  • 1.5 tbsp. sesame oil
  • ¼ tsp. salt
  • ¼ tsp. pepper
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 1 inch nub fresh ginger, grated
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1.5 cups low sodium chicken stock
  • ¼ cup + 2 tbsp. packed brown sugar
  • 1.5 tbsp. low sodium soy sauce
  • 3 tsp. cornstarch
  • 2 tsp. lemon juice
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 red pepper, diced
  • 3 cups coleslaw mix (or diced cabbage and carrot)

Instructions:

 Cook your rice according to package directions (I cooked mine the night before to make things extra easy).

 Heat oil in a large skillet. Add the pork and season it with salt and pepper. Heat until cooked through and browned, and set it aside. To that same skillet, add onion, ginger and garlic and sauté about 5 minutes or until soft.

 In a medium bowl combine chicken stock, brown sugar, soy sauce, cornstarch, lemon juice and crushed red pepper. Stir together and pour into the skillet with the onion, garlic and ginger. Bring it to a boil and then simmer 10 minutes or so until thickened. Add the diced pepper, coleslaw mix and cooked pork. Stir-fry for 5 minutes or so until veggies are soft but still crisp. Add this mixture to the cooked rice and stir together until well combined.

 Serve!

 Inspired by: http://www.howsweeteats.com/2014/05/30-minute-vietnamese-caramel-pork-stir-fry/

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