During our snow break, we really wanted Chinese takeout. This is pretty typical of people with cabin fever: man do I ever wish I could have something that there is no way I can procure for myself! In particular, after visiting a gluten-free friendly [very famous] Chinese restaurant for Christmas we wanted one of our new favorites, Orange Beef. We would have definitely ordered this magical delivery food, except it was in the middle of a blizzard and sadly no one delivers gluten-free Chinese food around here.
So we had to make-do with what we had. Our freezer had lots of pork, but no beef. A’ight – we can work with that. Then, I spent some time researching and investigating our cabinets, finding the ingredients that would make our Crispy Orange Pork the best it could be. Stacy says that we’ve come up with something great for you!
Similar to our Mongolian Beef, this recipe is already a family favorite for us. The recipe makes crispy-crunchy pork slices in a sweet and tangy sauce that you will certainly love. And unlike many variations we’ve tried, the orange-molasses is a real star. And yes, you could use this technique on beef or chicken and come away with something just as delightful.
- 2 lbs pork chops, thinly sliced
- 2 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tsp ground black pepper*
- 2 tbsp gluten-free tamari (or coconut aminos for AIP)
- 1/2 C cassava flour**
- 1/2 C fresh squeezed orange juice (about 2 medium oranges)
- Peel from oranges, we used this one to minimize pith
- 1/2 C blackstrap molasses***
- 1/4 C gluten-free tamari (or coconut aminos for AIP)
- 2 Tbsp gluten-free hoisin (or coconut aminos for AIP)
- 2 Tbsp mirin (or apple cider vinegar for AIP)
- 2 Tbsp rice wine vinegar (or apple cider vinegar for AIP)
- 1 Tbsp sesame oil*
- 1 tsp cassava flour**
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tsp fresh ginger
- 1 Tbsp lard
- Oil for frying (lard, palm shortening, or avocado oil are our preferred frying oils)
- 1/4 C sesame seeds*
- In a medium bowl, combine marinade ingredients and toss to coat pork completely. Place on a wire rack to dry out in the refrigerator or freezer (for 30 minutes).
- Thinly slice orange peel and set aside.
- Whisk together the sauce by combining orange juice, molasses, tamari, hoisin, mirin, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil and cassava flour in a small bowl and set aside.
- In an electric fryer or a tall pot with heavy bottom, preheat frying oil to 375 degrees.
- Remove pork pieces from freezer and fry in small batches until brown and crispy, about three minutes. Remove from fryer and transfer to towel-lined plate or rack to drain. Repeat for all meat.
- When all pork has been fried, melt lard in large skillet over medium heat. Saute ginger and garlic for one minute.
- Add orange peel (except some to garnish) to the skillet and saute one minute more, then pour in sauce. Simmer for five minutes until hot.
- Toss in pork pieces and stir to coat. Top with sesame seeds and additional orange peel to garnish. We recommend it served over fried (cauli) rice.
*for auto-immune paleo-friendly (AIP) leave off items with a * and use alternatives marked, unless you've successfully reintroduced them already
**while we recommend Otto's cassava flour, tapioca flour would likely work
***Molasses is the best of all the sugars! It's full of nutrients and deliciousness and is even The Paleo Mom approved!