Vietnamese Clay-Pot Pork with Sticky Rice and Lime

20170516_211755Sticky sweet caramelised pork, served with jasmine sticky rice, fresh coriander and a squeeze of lime. It’s rich and comforting, proper stick-to-your-ribs food, perfect after a long day or a good workout. plus I’d say this only took around 30 minutes to prepare so doesn’t take a big chunk out of your day! I first tried this in Hanoi, shortly after first arriving in Vietnam last year. After the dainty simplicity of Laotian food, this salted-caramel dish was amazing! Make sure to throw in plenty of fish sauce for depth and saltiness against the brown sugar.

The travel bug is creeping back in as the summer comes around. I think summertime genuinely makes people more ambitious and confident, it’s great. As if the sunshine, longer days and greener leaves drive pro-activity and innovation. Then again maybe this is normality for the sunny places of the world and everyone in the UK is just miserable for the winter months!!! Summer makes me want to get on a plane and see the world, tick off my ever growing bucket list on a shoe-string budget. But when I can’t and really I need to be running some stats and writing papers I get nostalgic, but at least trying out recipes helps me to remember the past holidays, the smells and tastes.

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Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp soft brown sugar
  • 300g pork (shoulder, trimmed chops, loin) in bite sized strips
  • 1.5 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp light soy sauce
  • 1.5 tsp garlic paste
  • 1.5 tsp ginger paste
  • 1/2 tsp chilli flakes
  • 1/2 tsp Chinese 5-spice
  • 3 spring onions, shredded
  • 175g (1 cup) Thai sticky rice
  • 1 tbsp sushi vinegar

Method

First get your meat chopped and marinading in the fish sauce, soy sauce, garlic and ginger paste, chilli and 5-spice. Get your rice cooking according to packet instructions. Reduce the amount of water by 1 tbsp and substitute with 1 tbsp of sushi vinegar.

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Heat a wok over high heat. Once hot, scatter the brown sugar across the surface of the pan and watch carefully. As soon as the sugar melts and starts to darken, add the pork including the marinade. Heat for a minute then add 1/2 cup of water and bubble over a high heat.

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Add another 1/2 cup of water and cover the pan, simmering over a medium heat to cook the pork through. After ~8 minutes remove the lid and reduce the sauce down to a thick, sticky glaze. Turn off the heat and sprinkle over half the shredded spring onion and squeeze over the juice of 1 lime wedge.

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Serve with a generous helping of sticky rice, remaining spring onion, lime wedges, chopped fresh coriander and any other green leaves.

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