I’m a little in love with Chinese 5 Spice at the moment. I’m no expert in Chinese cooking by a long shot, but the flavours in 5 spice seem to taste really similar to hoi sin sauce, and in turn, remind me of my all time favourite Chinese dish: Crispy Duck Pancakes with Hoi Sin Sauce, cucumber and spring onion.
I’ve been loving my stir fries with pork loins, so when I came across a pack of organic pork mince in the reduced section, I wondered if I could make something with similar flavours.
Last night, I decided to experiment and came up with these very quick and easy to make lettuce cups…
Chinese 5 Spice Pork Lettuce Cups (serves 2 -4)
- 400g of pork mince (organic and outdoor reared if you can get it)
- 1 cup of diced mushrooms
- 1 small courgette, diced
- 6 spring onions
- 1 small head of lettuce (to get about 8 large leaves)
- 1 tbsp of Chinese 5 Spice blend (add more if you really like strong flavours)
- 4 tbsp of runny honey
- 1.5 tbsp of soy sauce or tamari
Heat a large frying pan or wok over a medium high heat. Add a little oil (I used coconut) then add the pork mince, mushrooms and courgettes. Fry for 10 – 15 minutes until the pork is cooked through. While that is cooking wash the lettuce leaves and put on some plates and slice the spring onions. Make the sauce / dressing by combining the spice blend, honey and soy sauce or tamari in a small bowl. When the pork is cooked, add half of the sauce to the pan and stir to incorporate. Take the pan off the heat for a moment, and then fill your lettuce cups with the mix, top with the spring onions and a drizzle of the remaining sauce. Roll up and eat with your fingers! Just make sure you have some kitchen towels close by for the clean up!
These take 20 minutes from start to finish, and feel like a real treat on a week night. The mushrooms and courgette add some extra veggie goodness and a little texture to the pork mix and the spring onions just finish the whole dish off. Perfect for any one looking for lower carb dinner ideas (just reduce the honey and use some stevia as well), and these could easily be made Paleo friendly by swapping the soy sauce for coconut aminos.
If you make these into 4 portions they’d make a great light starter for a Chinese themed feast. For something more substantial, try serving the pork mix with some stir fried spring greens and brown rice or whole wheat noodles.
Do you enjoy Chinese cuisine? What is one of your favourite healthy, quick to make week night dinner?