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Vietnamese Caramel Pork
Vietnamese Caramel Pork

The search was on to find the most delectable Eskort-inspired family dishes in South Africa, and this tasty recipe came out tops!

We know pork is delicious and ultra-versatile, but this Family Recipe competition in association with Eskort has introduced us to a culinary treat of meaty proportions! Having received hundreds of classic, tasty and innovative recipes, our panel of experts had the tough job of testing the dishes as prepared by YOU food editor Carmen Niehaus. Ultimately, Minette Barnard’s Vietnamese caramel pork dish most impressed the judges and it’s clear to see why.

We chatted to Minette about the winning dish and why she chose this particular recipe. She said: “It has a very distinctive flavour that I’ve never tasted before and is a firm favourite in our family!”

“I came across this recipe a couple of years ago and it immediately caught my eye. It sounded intriguing and I just had to give it a go. It turned out to be absolutely divine – a definite winner in our family!”

Because with Eskort, Life’s Delicious, Minette will receive a R5 000 Checkers voucher, as well as a copy of the Eskort 100 Years 100 Recipes book and a subscription to the digital version of YOU magazine. Her winning recipe will also be featured in YOU during October.

Impress your family with this winning recipe:

Minette Barnard likes to experiment with Asian flavours and created a wonderful dish by adding balanced flavours of sweet, sour and saltiness to this easy-to-prepare pork dish, says YOU food editor Carmen Niehaus.

Preparation: 20 minutes
Cooking: 20-30 minutes
Serves: 6

Ingredients:

 

Pork

 

750 g

Eskort boneless pork leg, fat trimmed off and cut into large chunks

 

salt and pepper

 

oil

280 g

carrots, thinly sliced

1

shallot, halved and sliced

1

lemon grass stalk, outer layer removed, bruised and cut in half

Caramel Sauce

 

150 g

soft light brown sugar

15 ml

fish sauce, plus extra

7.5 ml

lime juice plus extra

To Serve

 

 

salted peanuts

 

coriander leaves

 

cooked jasmine rice

Method:

Caramel sauce

  • Place the sugar and 30ml water in a saucepan over a medium heat and stir until the sugar dissolves.

  • Increase the heat to high and boil, without stirring, until the caramel turns a dark golden colour. Watch closely because it’s easily burnt.

  • Immediately remove the pan from the heat and add the fish sauce and lime juice to stop the cooking process.

Pork

  • Season the pork with salt and pepper. Heat a little oil in a saucepan and fry the pork chunks till brown.

  • Add the carrots, shallot and lemon grass and stir-fry 1 - 2 minutes.

  • Add the sauce, lower the heat and cook for about 10 minutes till the pork is done.

To serve

  • Mix some peanuts and coriander with the rice and spoon onto a serving platter.

  • Thread 2 - 3 pork chunks on a wooden skewer if preferred. Arrange the skewers on the rice and garnish with coriander.

Preparing the dish in a slow cooker

  • Put the carrots, shallots and lemon grass in a slow cooker. Add the pork and pour over the caramel sauce.

  • Cover the cooker and cook on Low for 4 hours, then stir through to prevent the pork and carrots from sticking together. Cook for a further 4½ hours until the pork is tender. Remove the pork and carrots from the cooker, wrap in foil and keep warm.

  • Strain the cooking liquid into a small saucepan, discarding the solids, and bring to the boil over a high heat. Boil for 3 minutes until the cooking liquid has reduced to about 125ml. Add a little more fish sauce and lime juice, if you like. Stir in the pork and carrots and toss well to coat. Sprinkle with peanuts and coriander and serve with rice.

Finally, a special tip from the home chef herself. “It’s all in the caramel sauce and lots of patience. It will be worth the wait in the end,” says Eskort recipe winner Minette Barnard. Try it out yourself!

 
Recipe Meal Types: - Stir-fry - Lunch - Dinner - Entertaining
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