Pickled Long Beans with Ground Pork（肉末豇豆, rou mo jiang dou, pronounced “eroh myuh dzyahng doh”, literally by character: “meat end cowpea bean”, strangely, this recipe is not made with cowpeas, but it has that name）is a typical Sichuan dish found in homes and restaurants throughout the province. Traditionally, it is made with long beans that have been made into traditional Sichuanese pickles（泡菜）but the way I am making, I am using 24-hour lighter pickles instead. So my version is less sour and less salty compared to the original. 🙂
This stir-fry is so delicious, with crispy beans and tasty pork. It has a fresh and light flavor with a touch of chili and Sichuan peppercorn. It’s also very easy to make!
First, we have to make the 24 hour pickled beans. Recipe adapted from a Chinese vegetarian food blog my mom sent me 🙂
You need Chinese long beans, which look sort of like green beans, but extremely long and darker green. You can also substitute regular green beans.
Get about 1/2 lb of the beans (about 250 grams). Wash the beans well, then soak in water with a few pinches of salt for 30 minutes. Then drain and dry the beans well (traditionally under the sun). Dice the beans into small pieces (about 1/2 cm or 1/4 inch), then add into a glass jar. Sprinkle 1/2 tsp salt (about 2.5 grams).
Add 2 cups (500 ml) water to a pot and add 1/2 star anise and 1/2 tsp Sichuan pepper. Bring to a boil and simmer 3 minutes. Then, immediately pour over the beans in the glass jar. Add 1 tsp Chinese distilled liquor (bai jiu), or vodka, or gin. Cover with a lid very tightly, shake a little.
Put the glass jar upside-down into a larger glass jar. Then pour more boiling water into the large glass jar. This seals the pickle jar from air. (In the traditional Sichuan pickled vegetable clay jar, there is an inside layer to add the hot water.) This may sound a little confusing, so here is a picture of my glass jar set-up:
After this, leave it for 24 hours and you have Sichuan pickled long beans, although a lot less sour and a lot less salty than the original. To make it more sour, perhaps leave it longer, maybe 36 or 48 hours even. (I haven’t tried it yet, but with 24 hours it was not sour yet.) You can store them in the fridge and eat the pickle with rice. However, you should not keep it for longer than 3 days because it will lose its crunchyness.
Now, time to make the stir-fry!
Adapted from Land of Plenty by Fuchsia Dunlop and Madame Huang’s Kitchen blog.
1 batch 24 hour pickled long beans (made from 1/2 lb or 250g fresh long beans)
1/2 lb (or 250g) ground pork
1 tsp light soy sauce
1/2 tbsp Shaoxing wine
2-3 pinches salt
1 tbsp minced garlic (optional)
1 tbsp minced ginger (optional)
1 tbsp minced green onion (optional)
2 tbsp cooking oil
1/2 tsp Sichuan peppercorns (optional)
4 dried red chili peppers, cut in half and seeds removed
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp sesame oil
more salt and soy sauce to taste if necessary
1. Drain the pickled long beans and remove the star anise. You can also try to remove the Sichuan peppercorns.
2. Add soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, and salt to the ground pork, mix well.
3. Heat a wok over high heat.
4. When hot, add oil. Lower heat to medium and add Sichuan peppercorns if using. Fry for 1-2 minutes to allow their flavor to infuse.
5. Add chilies and fry for 30 seconds or so until fragrant.
6. Turn heat to high, adding garlic, ginger, and green onion, if using, and fry for 1-2 minutes. If not using, do not fry longer and skip this step.
7. Add ground pork and use the wok spatula to break it up into tiny pieces while cooking it.
8. Stir-fry pork until fully cooked and water is dried up, leaving oil. This should take a few minutes.
9. Add the drained pickled beans. Add sugar. Stir-fry for 2-3 minutes to heat up and lightly cook the beans.
10. Taste and add salt and/or soy sauce to taste. I added about 1/4 tsp dark soy sauce for a slightly darker color.
11. Turn off the heat and add sesame oil, stir well.
12. Transfer stir-fry to a plate and serve with rice. Enjoy! 😀