Stir-fries are a great weeknight meal because they’re usually quick and easy. Plus, many stir-fry recipes combine protein and veggies so all you have to do is add steamed rice and you’ve got a complete meal. This particular recipe features super tender pork tenderloin and napa cabbage (aka Chinese cabbage) in a flavorful hoisin sauce. Yum!
As with any stir-fry, you want to have all the ingredients prepped, measured and ready to roll before you actually start cooking. This step can even be done the night before so that once you walk in the door to start dinner, all you have to do is heat the pan and grab the prepped ingredients out of the fridge.
In case you’ve never used Napa cabbage, it’s more leafy and has a milder flavor than regular cabbage. Check in the produce area of your grocery store or swing by an Asian market. The recipe calls for 6 cups of napa cabbage but next time I’ll add several cups more. It seems like a boat load of cabbage but it wilts down considerably (kind of like spinach).
Hoisin Pork with Napa Cabbage
-recipe adapted from Fine Cooking Magazine
1 lb. pork tenderloin, cut into 1/4-inch-thick strips (about 3 inches long)
1 tsp. kosher salt; more to taste
3 Tbs. hoisin sauce (try Lee Kum Kee brand)
2 Tbs. soy sauce
1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
3 Tbs. canola or peanut oil
2 tsp. minced garlic
6-8 cups napa cabbage, cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces (3/4 to 1 lb.)
1 red bell pepper, cored, thinly sliced, and cut into 2- to 3-inch lengths
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh chives or green onion tops (the dark green part)
In a large bowl, season the pork with 1/2 tsp. of the salt. In a small bowl, mix the hoisin sauce, soy sauce, and vinegar.
Heat 2 Tbs. of the oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet or large stir-fry pan over medium-high heat until shimmering hot. Add the pork and cook, stirring, until it browns and loses most of its raw appearance, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate.
Add the remaining 1 Tbs. oil to the skillet. Add the garlic, and once it begins to sizzle, add the cabbage and pepper. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 tsp. salt and cook, stirring, until the cabbage starts to wilt, about 2 minutes.
Add the hoisin mixture, the pork, and half of the chives and cook, tossing, until heated through, about 1 minute. Let sit for 2 minutes off the heat (the cabbage will exude some liquid and form a rich broth), toss well again, and serve sprinkled with the remaining chives.