San Choy Bow

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Let me tell you a funny story about today’s recipe:

Many years ago my sister and I headed to Fortitude Valley’s China Town for a delicious dinner. We found an appropriately regular looking Chinese Restaurant, and sat down eagerly (it is common knowledge that the worse it looks, the better it tastes. Never ever eat at a fancy-schmancy Chinese Restaurant if you actually want good food). We took our time perusing the menu, and upon seeing Sang Choi Bow, well, it was hardly a choice any longer considering how much I love the dish. The lady came up to take our orders, and I placed my order.
“To share?” She asked, and I scoffed.
“No!” I smiled genially, “It’s just for me.” Given most other restaurants in Brisbane only ever served this dish in tiny portions, I figured that I could eat this dish, in its entirety, by myself, for my main mean.
The lady raised her eyebrow, looked at me with a mixture of scepticism and confusion and horror before asking “Really? Just for you?”
“Yes, thank you.” I said brightly, and thanked her kindly as she hurried away to place our order with the kitchen.
Ten minutes later I understood the look she had given me earlier and I shrunk beneath the shadow of the plate she placed before me.
It was the largest plate of SBC I had ever seen. It was huge, mountainous, and I swear the lettuce cups had been grown by giants.
I gulped back my pride, and in my tiniest voice asked: “Uh, can we make this to share, please?”
One smug look and a nod later from the lady, and my sister and I shared the best SCB I have ever eaten.

And so here’s my recipe below, for what I consider to be pretty damn good as well!

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What Will I Need?

500g pork mince
1 tbsp cornflour
1 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp minced ginger
2 small red chili, seeds removed, finely diced
1 tsp hoy sin sauce
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp shaoxing wine (chinese cooking wine)
1 1/2 tbsp oyster sauce
50g shitake mushrooms, finely diced
200g tinned water chestnut, drained and finely diced
4 scallions, white parts only,  finely sliced
1 tsp peanut oil
1/2 tsp sesame oil
2 baby cos lettuce (or one iceberg lettuce), washed and leaves separated.

What Now?

  1. In a mixing bowl, add the pork, cornflour, garlic, ginger, chili, hoy sin, soy, shaoxing wine, oyster sauce, mushrooms and water chestnuts, and mix together until well combined. Set aside for 30 minutes to marinate.
  1. In a wok, or fry pan, heat the two oils over a medium heat and then sauté the scallion for a minute or until just starting to sizzle and soften.
  1. Add the pork mixture to the wok and raise the temperature to high. Stir fry the mince for five minutes or until cooked through. Remove from heat.
  1. Spoon the pork into the lettuce leaves and serve.

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