PORK AND GREENS WITH NOODLES

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This is one of those quick and easy recipes that is perfect for weeknights. (Of course you can also serve it on the weekend, but because of its ease of preparation, I tend to think of it as an “I’m too tired to really cook” kind of weeknight dish.) I mean really, when you analyze the ingredients, you have all the essential elements associated with dinner. You’ve got your meat, your starch, and your veggies. The only difference is that they are all combined in one neat little package. So while your family might feel slighted by only one item present on the dinner table, you can relax knowing you have covered all the bases. And truly, aren’t some nights just all about you! I mean – you’ve fed them right? And something really tasty too. So I say “get over it family and cut the poor cook some slack”!

Of course, if the gilt really becomes too much for you – throw a couple of cookies and a bowl of ice cream at them after dinner. (And no, they don’t have to be a home baked cookies. I am not the food Nazi, and I promise not to report you to Betty Crocker.)

So next time you get the urge to just go home and lock yourself in your room and to heck with feeding your hungry masses, stop at the store on your way home from work. (You know the little darlings have to be fed, so this is your way of feeding the troops, and still getting to bed early.) Pick up a couple thick, lean pork chops, a package of pre-washed greens, and any other ingredients for this dish that you don’t already have on hand. Then beat feet home, change your clothes, pour yourself a libation, and prepare my version of Martha Rose Shulman’s recipe for Stir-Fried Pork and Green with Noodles. Then relax and enjoy your meal. You’ve fulfilled your “food” obligation and in fine style too.  

One thing more – don’t forget the cookies and ice cream while you’re at the store.     

  • 2 T. vegetable oil, divided 
  • ½ lb. lean pork, cut in very thin strips
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 2 large garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 T. minced fresh ginger
  • pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • about 1 lb. Swiss chard, beet greens, turnip greens, spinach, or kale stemmed and washed very well  
  • 2 T. low sodium Tamari or soy sauce
  • ¼ c. chicken stock or water  
  • 8 oz. Japanese somen noodles, wide rice vermicelli, or Chinese egg noodles cooked al dente
  • ¼ c. thinly sliced green onions, garnish

Heat a large, heavy skillet or wok over medium-high heat until hot enough to evaporate a drop of water on contact. Add 1 tablespoon of the vegetable oil and add the pork; stir fry for about 2 minutes or until the pork is just barely cooked through. Remove from pan and set aside.  

Add the remaining 1 tablespoon vegetable oil, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and crushed red pepper flakes to the pan. Cook for about one minute or until the garlic releases its aroma. Stir in the greens and stir fry until mostly wilted. Add the Tamari and chicken stock. Cook for about a minute. Add the cooked noodles and reserved pork; stir together until heated through. Adjust seasoning, sprinkle with green onions, and serve immediately.

 

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