spur: came into my life in a most unusual way... Living in Melbourne can be very isolating and transient, so many people, so few connections or community spirit. Lee was my neighbour at the time, and a particular project I was working on needed some external support. Knowing the work Lee was doing led to a collaboration and two-day workshop event.
This is my go-to favourite recipe when we entertain. Simple to prepare and always delicious!Something about eating with your hands, getting right into each mouthful - its very humanising. This meal is so moreish!
· 1 tbsp vegetable oil
· 1 tbsp sesame oil
· 2 cloves crushed garlic
· 2 tbsp grated fresh ginger
· 4 spring onions, green and white parts finely chopped
· 500g minced pork
· 100g water chestnuts drained and finely chopped (substitute with slivered almonds)
· 3 tbsp oyster sauce, plus extra to serve
· 2 tbsp soy sauce
· 3 tbsp Chinese shaohsing rice wine
· 1 tbsp sugar
· 10 butter lettuce leaves washed, trimmed and kept in iced water (substitute cos lettuce leaves)
· black or white sesame seeds, toasted
· chopped chive stems, to garnish
1 · Heat the vegetable and sesame oils in a large frying pan/wok over medium heat
2 · Add the garlic and finely chopped white part of the spring onion and cook for 5 mins stirring frequently so the mixture doesn't catch and burn
3 · Add the minced pork and stir-fry for 3-4 mins.
4 · Stir in the water chestnuts (or slivered almonds), oyster sauce, soy sauce, rice wine and sugar.
5 · Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary to ensure there is a nice salty-sweet balance.
6 · Simmer for 5 minutes or until the liquid has reduced to a thick and syrupy consistency.
7 · Remove from the heat and stir in the green part of the spring onions.
8 · Drain the lettuce leaves and wipe gently to remove water.
9 · Fill each lettuce cup with the pork mixture, finishing with a dollop of oyster sauce and a sprinkling of sesame seeds, and garnish with chive stems. Enjoy!
Recipe shared byMax Johnson
Max is a storyteller, artist, mentor and cultural curator. An avid mental health advocate, Max works in many areas of his local community to promote connection and inclusion.
Recipe attributed to
From Indira Naidoo's cookbook 'The Edible Balcony'