Thai Sweet and Sour Pork

Sweet and Sour Pork entree
Paul Poplis / Getty Images
  • 30 mins
  • Prep: 15 mins,
  • Cook: 15 mins
  • Yield: Serves 2-3
Ratings (4)

Sweet and sour is traditionally Chinese, but can also be found in many Southeast-Asian cuisines including Thai. This recipe is very straight-forward to make, and the pork turns out tangy-delicious. I served mine up with sticky rice, which made for quite a wonderful dinner. Use pork spare ribs if you can, or substitute pork tenderloin (or chicken breast/thighs for sweet and sour chicken). You can choose to make it spicy or milder according to your liking. Because it includes vegetables, this recipe makes for a perfect all-in-one dish any night of the week.

What You'll Need

  • 1 to 1.5 lbs. pork (ribs or substitute pork tenderloin or chicken thighs, sliced)
  • Marinade:
  • 2 tsp. corn starch
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp. sherry
  • 1 shallot (OR 1/3 c. purple onion, diced)
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 6 teaspoons galangal (or ginger, grated )
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups snow peas
  • 3-4 heads bok choy (baby)
  • 1 cup mushrooms (sliced)
  • 1 bell pepper (red, sliced)
  • Garnish: fresh coriander/cilantro
  • Sweet & Sour Sauce:
  • 3/4 cup stock (chicken)
  • 1/4 cup ketchup
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar (not packed)
  • 1 tbsp. vinegar
  • 3 tbsp. fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 chili pepper (red, minced, OR 1-3 tsp. chili sauce OR 1/2 to 1 tsp. cayenne pepper)
  • 1 tbsp. lemon juice
  • 6 lime leaves (cut with scissors into thin strips, stems discarded)
  • 2 tsp. corn (starch dissolved in 3-4 tbsp. water)

How to Make It

  • Chop ribs into 2-3 inch segments and place in a bowl. Make the marinade and pour over the ribs. Toss well to coat. Set in the refrigerator to marinate while you prepare the other ingredients.
  • Warm a wok or large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add 1-2 tbsp. oil and swirl around, then add the shallot, garlic, and ginger. Stir-fry 1 minute to release the fragrance.
  • Add the sweet & sour sauce ingredients--except the lime leaves and cornstarch-water. Stir and bring to a boil.
  • Add the marinated pork plus the lime leaf strips and mushrooms. Stir well. Reduce heat to medium or medium-low (so pork is gently simmering). Cover and simmer 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  • Add the bell pepper and snow peas, stirring them in. Simmer 3-4 more minutes, or until vegetables have softened but still retain their color, and the pork is cooked.
  • Add the baby bok choy and cornstarch-water mixture. Stir well. The sauce will thicken in 1-2 minutes, which is just long enough to cook the bok choy (you want it still crisp).
  • Reduce heat to low and taste-test, adding more fish sauce for more salt/flavor, or more sugar if you prefer it sweeter. Top with the fresh coriander and serve with plain rice, Sticky Rice, or Coconut Rice.