Whiskey & Ginger ‘Chops’ with Stir-Fried Vegetables – put a little low carb ‘zing’ into January!

chopsI’m often heard to say that ‘fusion food’ only leads to confusion… for the palette anyway; but this in no ways means that East & West can’t sit comfortably together on the kitchen bench, sharing the warmth of the hearth…. Well in this recipe; they not only sit, but share a generous glass of good honest ‘Scotch’ together. Confusion only kicks in therefore if they down too much of the stuff! So be sure to mark the bottle.

There’s something divinely aromatic and elegant about the pairing of whiskey and ginger. I’m an ‘islands’ man myself; thereby not smoked with wood as per the mainland variants (why? Islands don’t have many trees). There’s a heady wild ‘peatiness’ to the whiskey of the Scottish islands; far preferable in my own mind; and a taste that goes so well with other such equally poised flavours; in this case, fresh zingy ginger root and fiery scotch bonnet chilli.

Feel free to vary the green vegetables as much as you like. I chose broccoli and beansprouts because they cook quickly, which is always the essence of a good stir fry. Chinese leaf cabbage would equally be a delight; as would courgettes (zucchini), green peppers or cauliflower.

As with all recipes on this blog; all ingredients are low in carbohydrate and therefore suitable for a ketogenic- / paleo-  diet, plus diabetics type one and two. My other half is type one, and sticking to this diet there’s no insulin calculation – the same quantities every day with no unpleasant highs and lows. Easy if you know how! But equally, if you simply want to cut the bloat of a carb rich diet, then give this dish a try. You won’t regret it!

Some people are marinaters, others not. Undeniably marinating enhances the flavours, but after a long day at work, we sometimes don’t have the luxury. So marinade if you can; if not don’t spare it another thought. I’m the last to judge!

If marinating your pork chops, peel a good thumb of ginger root and chop roughly with a sturdy knife or cleaver. Do the same with x3 cloves of garlic, followed by a scotch bonnet chilli or two. If you like things a little cooler, use jalapeños; if you crave the heat, add more plus seeds as you see fit. Chop together in one big pile until everything is evenly sized.

Place your pork chops (I used x4) into an oven dish and sprinkle half of your mix over the top. Follow this with a generous sprinkle of paprika, salt pepper and a large glug of scotch whiskey. Rub in with your hands, then leave to sit for 20 minutes to an hour, whilst the flavours develop. If you’re pressed for time, simply put the oven dish straight into a preheated medium oven, circa 170 – 180°c for 20-25 minutes until the pork is caramelised and browning at the edges.

Meanwhile, finely slice an onion and de-floret a large head of broccoli. Be sure to keep the stalk and finely slice that alongside the onion – it lends the perfect cheat’s intimation of bamboo shoots!

When your pork is 7 or so minutes from completion, place a solid wok onto a high heat. Glug in some sesame oil with a little sunflower oil to mete it out… Then pile in your chopped onion, broccoli stalk and the remaining half or your ‘galicky-ginger-chilli’ mix. Stir fry for a minute or so, then tumble in your chopped broccoli florets. Follow these two minutes later with your beansprouts. Now take the pork out of the oven and pour oven any pan juices surrounding the meat – it should smell and look delicious!

Cook the vegetables in the pan juices for a further minute, then spoon your chops on top. Finish the whole thing with a flourish of toasted sesame seeds and and a whirl of chopped coriander. Divine decadence in the extreme!

Thanks for reading and bon ap!

Adam.

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