Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Ca Chua Nhoi Thit - Pork-Stuffed Tomatoes

I adore this dish because it's beautiful and delicious.  The sauce produced by marrying all the ingredients together is so divine.  It's salty and sweet; tomato, sugar, and fish sauce equals the best sauce EVER!

This is quite a popular recipe on the web so I was a little reluctant to write an entry on it. I mean there are already so many great recipes out there, I should just focus on something else?  Well the bag of tomatoes I brought last week sitting in the refrigerator beg to differ.  

For this recipe you want to use firm tomatoes and try to pick out the flattest one if you want a pretty presentation.  You'll want to remove the core of the tomatoes but save them for the sauce.  For the pork mixture I used wood ear mushroom, minced garlic, minced green onions, paprika, chili powder, soy sauce, mushroom seasoning, salt, and vegetable oil.  Adding vegetable oil to the pork mixture will help it stay soft and moist after cooking.  The sauce is a combination of fish sauce, sugar, chili powder, ketchup, the core of the tomatoes, and green onions.  I often add chili powder to my recipe for that extra kick, omit if you prefer a mild taste.  Once you have mix all the ingredients together for the pork mixture, refrigerate this mixture for a couple hours.  Refrigerating the mixture help it bind together and it will less likely fall apart during the cooking process. 

1/2 lb of ground pork
6 medium size tomato
1/2 cup of wood ear mushroom (rehydrate and finely chopped)
1 teaspoon of minced garlic
1 tablespoon of minced green onions
soy sauce
fish sauce
chili powder
mushroom seasoning
vegetable oil
chopped green onions

1.  Prepare the pork mixture by mixing together the pork, wood ear mushroom, garlic, green onions, 2 tablespoon of soy sauce, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 teaspoon of chili powder, 1 teaspoon of mushroom seasoning and 2 tablespoon of vegetable oil.  Combine and refrigerate for a couple hours. 
2.  Cut the top of the tomatoes off and remove the core of the tomatoes.  Save the core and top part of the tomatoes for later use. You'll want to cut them into smaller pieces.
3.  Fill the tomatoes with the pork mixture.
4.  Heat up cooking oil in a pan.
5.  Place the tomatoes top down into the oil and let brown.  Let this brown slowly because you'll want the pork to cook all the way through.  
6.  Once the meat has brown flip the tomato over.  We can begin making the sauce.
7.  Add about 4-5 tablespoon of fish sauce to the pan ( you can add more if you would like to make more sauce).  Add the rest of the tomatoes, 3 tablespoon of sugar, and 1 tablespoon of ketchup.  Just let it simmer on the stove on very low heat.  This will produce the sauce and the tomatoes will soak up the sauce as well.  You want to make sure the bottom of the tomatoes doesn't overcook and burst.  Just be patience and let this cook on very low heat.  Add the green onions at the very end.  

Best eaten with steamed rice, enjoy!


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