Sichuan-style asparagus with pork mince
- April 2023
- Serves 2 (or 4 as a side)
- Hands-on time 30 min
Our Sichuan-style asparagus is inspired by the popular Chinese green bean dish, which sees the vegetable stir-fried with ginger, garlic, pork mince and sichuan peppercorns in lieu of a sauce. It’s delicious served with rice or as part of a wider selection of Chinese dishes.
You might also love tofu with caramel and sichuan pepper.
- 10.1g (1.8g saturated)
- 7.1g (6.2g sugars)
- Vegetable oil to shallow-fry
- 250g fine asparagus
- 1 tbsp garlic paste
- 1 tbsp ginger paste
- 4 dried red chillies, soaked in hot water
- 3 tsp sichuan peppercorns, 2 tsp ground to a powder, 1 tsp left whole
- 150g pork mince
- 2 tbsp light soy sauce
- 2 tbsp shaoxing wine
- 1 tbsp sugar
- Pour about 3cm deep of vegetable oil in a pan or wok and put over a medium high heat. Once shimmering hot, fry the asparagus until just starting to wrinkle – about 5 minutes. You may need to work in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. Drain on kitchen paper, patting dry with paper to remove excess oil.
- Remove most of the remaining oil from the wok, leaving about 1 tbsp in the pan. Add the ginger and garlic and fry until soft but not coloured. Add the chillies and sichuan peppercorns, followed by the pork mince. Allow to brown and crisp for 5 minutes then add the soy sauce, shaoxing wine and sugar. Cook for another minute or so until the sugar has dissolved and the sauce clings to the mince. Return the asparagus to the pan and stir to combine. Serve immediately with rice or other dishes.
The dish uses a Chinese technique called gan chao or ‘dry frying’ whereby the asparagus is stir-fried without sauce until starting to wrinkle, meaning moisture has evaporated from the vegetable and giving it a pleasant, slightly chewy texture.
To make the dish veggie, finely dice shiitake mushrooms and fry in place of pork mince.
Sichuan pepper provides a pleasant, warm, mouth-numbing heat (different from the spicy heat of chilli) and is available from Asian supermarkets or online.
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