Dongbei 東北 means the 'East North' plain of China, old name is Manchuria. This area is made up of 3 provinces Heilongjiang, Jilin and Liaoning.
Guo bao rou 鍋包肉 is a sweet and sour pork Dongbei style. The difference between this S 'n' S pork to other bog standard S 'n' S pork is the use of very thin pork slivers. Pork loin is usually the choice of meat used.
Here is the recipe.
Ingredients: (serve 2 - 3 people)
200g pork loin*, cut into thin slivers about 2mm think
1 tbsp light soy sauce
2 tsp Chinese cooking wine
1/2 cup potato starch or cornflour (cornstarch)
a little over 1/4 cup water
oil for frying about 1 - 1.5 cups
1 red chilli cut into long thin strips (about 1 tbsp)
2 - 3 spring onion (scallion) cut into long thin strips or long slices
1 (thumb size) piece of ginger shredded into very fine thin strips
5 tbsp Chinese red or black rice vinegar
2 - 3 tbsp sugar
2 tsp light soy sauce
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
a little fresh cooking oil or meat frying oil
extra spring onion and chilli for garnish
*Do use a chunk of loin pork much larger than 200g, pre-sliced loin steaks are very difficult to slice into thin slivers. Slice what you need and leave the rest for other use.
- Marinate the pork slivers with soy and wine and leave for 15 - 20 min.
- Mix chilli, spring onion, ginger, vinegar and sugar together. Leave aside.
- Mix the starch with water, it can be very stiff do give it a good stir, best use your fingers.
- Add in the pork, gently mix with your fingers. If the starch mixture is far too thick and too hard to mix with the meat then add a touch more water. The starch should stick to the meat in an even thin film.
- Heat the oil till hot, test with few droplets batter if you want to, if they sizzle rapidly without burning too quickly the oil is hot enough.
- Take one piece of meat at a time, make sure you spread it out like a little blanket (I find picking up the meat with both hands is much easily). Gently lay the meat into the hot oil. Fry few pieces of meat at a time till golden brown and the coating is hard and crunchy.
- Take the meat out and drain on kitchen towel. If you have the oven on low, put this in to keep warm. If the meat pieces are quite large, cut into smaller pieces.
- Remove all the frying oil and leave about 1 tbsp (or you can use fresh cooking oil). Fry the garlic with it then add in the vinegar mixture let this come to the boil. Heat off add in the meat pieces and toss quickly. There should not be much sauce left. The coated meat should look quite glossy yet remains crunchy. Put this on a serving plate and top with a little garnishes.
- Serve hot.