Stamina hakusai su-mushi: vinegar-steamed napa cabbage and stir-fried pork
I bought the February issue of Kyou no Ryouri (Today’s Cooking) recently because there was an interesting looking feature, “Nabemono Yasai Idea Dishes.” This article had a lot of recipes for using the vegetables that you usually put into nabe (Japanese hotpots). Maybe Japanese housewives have the same issue that I do: I love daikon, nira, hakusai (napa cabbage), and shungiku in my nabe, but then I’m not sure what to do with the leftover vegetables except to make more nabe with them. Now I have a bunch of ideas for other dishes that use these leftover vegetables. Most of the recipes focus on the vegetable, with just a bit of meat added as an accent, so they’re good for the environment and low calorie too (compared to more meat-centric meals). Trying to save money? It doesn’t get much more economical than cabbage and daikon! Another great point is that all of the recipes that I’ve tried from the article look quick and simple; great for a weeknight meal!
Here’s the first recipe I tried from this feature.
Stamina hakusai su-mushi: Vinegar-steamed pork and napa cabbage
adapted from Kyou no Ryouri, February 2009
1/4 hakusai (napa cabbage)
300 grams thinly sliced pork (buta koma gire niku)
2 cloves garlic
small piece fresh ginger
Chop the cabbage into bite-sized pieces. Mince the garlic and ginger. Cut the pork into bite-sized pieces.
Put the cabbage into a pot large enough to hold all of it. Add 100 milliliters vinegar and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cover and steam for 2 to 3 minutes. Stir the cabbage and continue cooking until the cabbage is as cooked as you like it.
In a frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil (reduced from 2 tablespoons in the original recipe) and cook the garlic and ginger. When the garlic and ginger is fragrant, add the pork and stir fry. Add 1 tablespoon shoyu and 1 tablespoon sake. Reduce the liquid a bit.
To serve, pile the cabbage on a large platter (drain off most of the liquid as it is very strong). Pile the pork on top of the cabbage. Eat with rice.