An asian twist on the classic bolognaise is on the menu this week. These flavours are a simple way to introduce new and interesting tastes to your children’s inexperienced palates. The recipe is flexible, so you can substitute the vegetables for ones your children prefer. Mine battle a bit with courgette texture, but we are working on it! This is a dish the whole family can sit down and enjoy together, so give it a go. It’s great on the budget with courgette being in season and pork mince reasonably priced.
It’s fast, easy and something a little different to add to your repertoire!
PREP TIME: 10mins
COOK TIME: 15mins
SERVES: 4 people
3 medium-sized courgettes
120g bag baby spinach
8-10 button mushrooms chopped into quarters (optional)
4 tablespoons oil
3 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 red chilli, deseeded, finely sliced
1 medium onion, diced
500g pork mince
4 tablespoons shao xing cooking wine or rice wine
1 teaspoon cornflour mixed to paste witha little water
2 teaspoons sesame oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
300ml good-quality chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon sugar
3 tablespoons roughly-chopped coriander
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
Jasmine rice or flat noodles to serve with pork
1.Cook rice (or noodles) as per cooking instructions. I cheat and use my rice cooker. 1 cup of uncooked rice makes about 3 cups of cooked.
2.Cut the ends off the courgettes. Cut long-ways into quarters, then cut each quarter in half across-ways.
3.Pop the washed spinach into a colander and pour over a jug of boiling water to wilt the leaves. Push down to drain.
4.Heat a fry pan to a medium-high heat, add in half the oil and brown the courgette in batches until golden on both sides, should take 1-2 min each side. Remove from heat and put to the side. Next, if you’re using the mushrooms, cook them for 2-3 mins in the same pan and place in with the courgette.
5.In the same pan, put in remaining oil and fry the onion, garlic and chilli for 2-3 mins, stirring constantly so it doesn’t brown.
6.Add in the pork in small batches, not adding another handful until the first batch is cooked. Ensure you use a wooden spoon to break up any clumps of meat.
7.Once this is all in and cooked, add in the shao xing cooking wine and stir in until nearly all reduced.
8.Next pour in soy sauce, stock, sesame oil, salt and sugar and mix thoroughly.
9.Add back the mushroom and spinach into the pork mix and let it simmer for about 7 mins. After 5 mins, add back the courgette to warm it through. Taste to see if needs a little more salt, sugar or soy sauce and add if necessary.
10.Stir through the cornflour mix so the liquid thickens slightly and let simmer for further few minutes. Remove from heat.
11.Sprinkle over the chopped coriander and serve immediately with the steamed rice or noodles.