Thursday, May 24, 2012

another culinary success!

Well, it is mostly a success, I should have left out the kiwi fruit.  Since I didn't say unqualified success and I am technically not lying.

My husband suggested that we have hamburger stroganoff for dinner, but we didn't have any mushrooms.  While pondering what to do with hamburger, I was inspired:  sweet and sour meatballs!  Yes, we have crushed pineapple and green pepper!  So I thawed the hamburger carefully in the microwave and then decided that I did not want to go through all the trouble of making meatballs.

And then I thought about the mangoes and kiwi fruit I had picked up at Costco earlier today...

Anyway, leave out the kiwi fruit and it would be a great success.  And it will work with chicken, pork or beef.  It goes over rice best, but noodles would work also.  Now I will quit talking about it and give you the recipe.

Sweet and Sour Meat

1.  Start the Rice Cooker.  Preferably with rice and water inside of it.  If you don't have a rice cooker, go buy one.  Trust me on this.

2.  Chop:
1 medium onion
1/2 to 1 green pepper
3 cloves of garlic
some ginger root
1 mango

3.  Brown 1 pound hamburger (or meat balls (if you haven't run out of energy by this time of the day) or beef cubes or pork or chicken) in a little bit of olive oil.  Use oil even if you have hamburger, because I sure hope you got the extra lean kind!

4.  Add the vegetables you just chopped and saute until they are transparent.

5.  Add 1/4 cup of vinegar, a couple of teaspoons of cornstarch mixed with water, some beef or chicken broth (I used something called "Better Than Boullion", it comes in beef and chicken flavor), 1/4 cup of pineapple syrup and a bunch of the pineapple chunks.  Bring to a boil and add water if it is too thick, more cornstarch if it is too thin.  Add sugar, salt or soy sauce, and pepper to taste.  If you don't have ginger root or garlic, here is where you add the powders.  A tablespoon or so of Worcestershire sauce would work too.

6.  Add the mangoes and heat through and serve.  By this time, the rice in the cooker is done too!

Crushed pineapple works if you don't have chunks, but there isn't a lot of juice to add the pineapple flavor to the sauce.

About the amounts:
the only important amount is 2 teaspoons of cornstarch.  Everything else is to taste.  I like lots of garlic and little salt. My husband put all the green pepper on my plate.  (I put tomatoes on his, so life is fair.)