Identity crisis? This quick meat and vegetable curry starts as a stir-fry then finishes as a braise—but a quick braise. Usually pork shoulder takes hours to braise in the oven, but since the meat is cut into thin strips, the time dwindles considerably. Boneless pork shoulder has a rich, full flavor; plus slicing it thin before cooking counters its chewiness.
Green beans cook alongside, absorbing the spiced broth and providing a fresh, vegetal contrast. Curry powder is used as a flavor base, and whole spices amp up the intensity. Just remember to remove the cardamom pods before serving (if you can see them). The Hubs got quite a jolt when he accidentally bit into one!
In some cases you have choices on which spice to use. We incorporated as much of them as possible, i.e. both onion and garlic. And in the case of the noodles, you can always substitute steamed rice instead.
Ginger-Curry Pork and Green Beans
- 2 Tbsp. neutral oil
- 1 lb. boneless pork shoulder, trimmed, cut into 2-inch strips and sliced ¼ to ⅛ inch thick
- 2 tsp. curry powder
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper
- 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped OR 8 medium garlic cloves, chopped OR both
- 1 Tbsp. minced fresh ginger
- 3 cardamom pods, crushed OR 1 cinnamon stick OR 8 curry leaves OR a combination
- 8 oz. green beans, trimmed and halved on the diagonal
- 1 1⁄2 cups water
- Rice OR cellophane noodles, cooked according to package directions
- In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high, heat the oil until barely smoking. Add the pork, curry powder, 1½ teaspoons salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring once or twice, until the pork is well browned, about 4 minutes.
- Add the onion, ginger and cardamom; cook, stirring, until the onion is browned, about 2 minutes.
- Add the beans and 1½ cups water; bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits. Cover partially and cook, stirring occasionally, until the beans are tender and the sauce clings to the meat, about 15 minutes.
- Meanwhile, prepare your rice or cellophane noodles according to package directions.
- Remove and discard the cardamom from the sir-fry, then taste and season with salt and pepper.
- Optional garnish: Chopped fresh cilantro OR toasted sesame seeds OR chopped chilies OR a combination
Adapted from a recipe by Courtney Hill for Milk Street