Thursday, September 22, 2011

Asian Pork and Cabbage

I had been seeing recipes for Asian lettuce bowl and it made me think about eggrolls.  I decided that I wanted to try a cabbage roll with a crispy coating.  I gathered all my ingredients and pulled out some spices that I thought would make a tasty profile and set to work.  When it was all said and done I was really satisfied with the flavors but maybe a little disappoint with the texture of the rolls.  I just didn't get that really crispy crunch I was looking for.  I suppose there is just to much moisture in the leaves for the coating to remain crispy.  I only made 5 rolls in my test batch and I decided to just chop what was left of the head of cabbage and make burgers out on the filling.  The flavors were still there and the prep time was significantly reduced (although not nearly as pretty).  So, I'll probably still make this in the future but I won't go through the trouble of making rolls.

Asian Cabbage Rolls (or Asian Pork Burgers with Cabbage)

1/2 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1t. minced ginger
1/4c. to 1/2c. white wine
1T. coconut aminos
1T. Red Boat fish sauce
3T. coconut cream
1 Star Anise ground (or about a heaping 1/8t. of ground star anise)
1/4t. ground ginger
1/4t. clove
1/4t. cinnamon
1/2t. white pepper
2 pound pork
1/4c. coconut flour
1/4c. almond meal
1 head of cabbage
1 egg

1. Start a large pot of water boiling.
2. Heat fat of choice in a skillet and add the onion and carrots.  Cook until the onion is soft.
3. Add the garlic and ginger and cook about 1-2 minutes.
4. Add the white wine and deglaze the pan (about 1 minute) then add the aminos and fish sauce. Stir to mix.
5. Add the coconut milk and cook, stirring often, until most of the liquid is gone.
6. Scrape into a large mixing bowl and add the spices.  Mix well.
7. Once the onion mixture has cooled a little, add the ground pork and mix well to incorporate all the spices.
8. Separate the leaves of the cabbage and blanch in the boiling pot of water until soft.  Remove and set in a colander to drain.
9.  To assemble: dry the cabbage leaves with a paper towel, scoop a spoonful of the pork mixture at the stem end of the cabbage leaf and roll up folding the edge in after the first roll.
10. Coat the roll in the egg mixture, then roll in the almond meal/coconut flour mixture.
11. Fry up in a skillet with the fat of your choice.

*If you don't want to go through the trouble of blanching the cabbage and rolling you can just chop the cabbage and cook in a skillet and make burger patties out of the pork mixture (I added some of the almond meal/coconut flour mixture to the meat just to have that flavor in there).  They aren't as pretty but just as tasty.