Thursday, January 28, 2021

Every Korean's favourite dish - Tangsuyuk 糖醋肉

Kdrama fans will be familiar with this dish - Tangsuyuk or 糖醋肉, which is usually served in Chinese restaurant.  When you look at the actors digging into this dish, have you ever wondered if they really taste as great as it look?  Well, I did.  And so I googled around for its recipe and decided to give it a try.

Just by looking at the vibrant color it is enough to entice one's taste bud.  Biting into the deep fried meat and I am sold!

Will I cook it again?

Well.... unless there is a special request or there's a special occasion.  Or when I have at least 3 hours of free time on my hand, or when I feel that I have enough energy to wipe down the whole kitchen stove and floor after cooking this dish. 

No joke, this dish requires so much time on preparation and cooking that I only managed to cook this dish for dinner that day.  Ok, its a great one pot dish meal though, plus it has protein and loads of vegetables.  Pretty balance for a meal.

Why did I say it's a hassle to cook this dish?  That is because you have to mix the potato starch with water and let it sits either on the countertop or fridge for at least one hour for the mixture to settle down to the bottom of the bowl.  And the the thinly sliced meat has to be coated with this batter and deep fried TWICE.

However, you will be rewarded with a delectable dish that will satisfy your craving for fried food and at the same time makes you eats your greens.  The sweetness and sourish taste of the tangsuyuk sauce, complements the vegetables and the deep fried meat.  The crunch from biting into the meat makes this an instant comfort food.

So, are you ready to start cooking this dish?  Let's go!

Ingredients (good for 2-3 pax)
* 250g boneless pork loin
* half teaspoon of grated ginger 
* some salt and pepper
* half small onion, cut into bite size
* half small carrot, sliced thinly
* half cucumber, sliced thinly
* mushroom, a handful
* 1 cup potato starch
* 2 tablespoon of lightly beaten egg
* oil for deep frying

Tangsuyuk sauce
* 1 tablespoon soy sauce
* 2 tablespoon vinegar (I used distilled vinegar)
* 4 tablespoon sugar
* 1 cup water
* 1 small mixture of starch slurry; 1 tablespoon of corn starch mix with 2 tablespoon of water

1. mix 1 cup of potato starch with 1 cup of water.  Leave it on countertop or fridge for at least 1 hour to let the mixture settle down onto the bottom of the bowl.
2. Cut the pork loin into long thin strips, mix in the grated ginger and a pinch of salt.

3. Cut up the vegetables into bite size.  Even though I listed down some vegetables, you can add in your favourite.  Like in this photo I have capsicums too.

4. Remove the potato starch mixture from the fridge, you can see that mixture has sank onto the bottom of the bowl.  Pour the water away.

5. Add 2 tablespoon of lightly beaten egg and 1 tablespoon of oil, mix them together with the batter.  The batter will be hard so you need some strength to break them up, the oil should make the mixing easier.

6. Heat up enough oil in your wok or frying pan.  While waiting, add some sliced pork into the batter to coat.

7. When the oil is hot enough, add in the meat in for deep frying.  You have to fry them in small batches to prevent them from sticking together.  Once they have turned golden brown, remove them with a slotted spoon or ladle, place them in a plate lined with kitchen towel to drain the oil. 

8. In a frying pan, heat up some oil, add in onion to fry till translucent, followed by capsicum, mushroom, carrot and lastly cucumber.  Keep frying them till they are almost cooked.  In the meantime, mix the ingredients for the tangsuyuk sauce in a bowl and set aside for use later.

9. When the vegetables are almost done, pour in the tangsuyuk sauce and bring it to boil for a few minutes.  Add in the starch slurry 1 tablespoon at a time, stir well and keep on adding till it reaches the consistency that you prefer.

10. Heat up the oil in wok again, add in the deep fried pork in.  You can put all the pork into the wok this time.  Deep fry them for about 2 to 3 minutes, remove them with a slotted spoon or ladle, place them in a plate lined with kitchen towel to drain the oil.

11. Put the drained pork into a big plate and pour the tangsuyuk sauce over it and serve it.


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