It’s been less than a week since I arrived in Malaysia and I’m already spending all my time devouring Malaysia’s goodness. I know, I have to admit that I am a glutton – that’s the result of coming from a family & friend of foodies 🙂
The weather here is super hot and humid – definitely a big turn from the cold and chilly Melbourne weather! I had the best moments eating at many of Malaysia’s tai chow (Open air chinese stir-fry coffee shops) in shorts & slippers (LOL) – reminiscing sweet memories and taste from some of my favourite dishes like Sweet & Sour Pork (Gu Lou Yuk), Deep Fried Yam Basket (Fat Put Piu Hiong), Steamed Fish with Hot Chilli Paste (Cheong Ching Fei Zhou Yu), Hokkien Mee (Fu Kin Chow), Assam Laksa …. so many more that I can’t even list them down 🙂
After a string of delicious tai chow dishes, I was inspired to recreate my favourite dish – Sweet & Sour Pork aka Gu Lou Yuk. Sweet & Sour Pork is undoubtedly one of the most well known Cantonese dish, eaten and loved by anyone and everyone who has tried it. The success of sweet & sour pork lies in the crispy, light bite texture and sweet, sour sauce, which by the way, is not easy to copy and surely does not look and taste like those found in the Australia food courts!
Many recipes have been tried and tested but they don’t look and taste right … that is, until now. This recipe was adapted from Smoky Wok but I use the triple deep fry technique (used in Chicken Kara age frying method) to preserve crispiness of the batter (without being too oily) and to keep its pork’s tenderness. According to Smoky Wok, the essential ingredient is the plum sauce which gives the depth of sourness to this dish – and she’s absolutely right!
Try it! I’m sure your family will love it.
Sweet and Sour Pork ‘Gu Lou Yuk’ (adapted from Smoky Wok)
4 pcs pork tenderloin fillet, cut into bite-size cubes
1 large red onion, quartered
1/2 cucumber (with skin on), cubed
1/2 cup Potato flour
Pinch of salt
Vegetable oil, for deep frying
1 tsp corn flour
1 tsp custard powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp water
5 tbsp ketchup
3 tbsp chilli sauce
4 tsp plum sauce
1 tsp light soy sauce
2 tbsp water
1/2 tbsp sugar
1. Marinade the pork with marinade mixture. While mixing the marinade, massage the marinade gently into the pork meat. Set aside for 10-20 minutes.
2. Prepare the sauce by mixing all the sauce ingredients in a sauce pan. Stir until all the ingredients are mixed well. Bring to a boil. Remove and set aside.
3. To prepare the batter – pour the flour in a bowl and mix the salt into the flour. Mix well. With chopsticks, drop each marinated pork into the flour one piece at a time. Ensure that the pieces of pork are not stuck together in the flour. Remove the coated pork and stand in a tray or plate at room temperature for a few minutes. This allows the batter to stick to the pork and thus result in crispier, crunchier fried pork.
4. Heat a deep wok with enough vegetable oil until it’s very hot. To test, drop a small pinch of coated pork and if it bubbles, the temperature is just right. Drop each coated pork into the oil but be careful not to over crowd. Fry in batches. Deep fry the pork for 1 minute. Remove and rest on a cooling rack for 30 seconds. Repeat the same.
5. After the first round is completed. Place the fried pork one-by-one back into the hot oil and fry for another 30 seconds. Repeat the same for the rest.
6. For the last time, transfer back the fried pork into the hot oil again and fry for another 30 seconds. Remove and rest on the cooling rack for 2 minutes.
7. In another pan, heat about 1 tbsp vegetable oil. Saute the onion until fragrant, then fry the cucumber and pineapple until 70% cooked.
8. Pour in the sauce and bring to a boil. Pour in the fried pork and mix well with the sauce.
9. Serve hot with warm jasmine rice.