Pork with an amazing crunch in a refined, not gloopy, sweet and sour sauce.
500g pork fillet
3 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp shao xing wine or dry sherry
1 tsp Chinese five spice
200g plain flour
3 tbsp tomato sauce
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tbsp caster sugar
1 tbsp cornflour
1 egg white
Vegetable oil, for frying
1 medium brown onion, sliced
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1 tbsp finely sliced ginger
2 medium red capsicums, sliced
230g water chestnuts
4 shallots, sliced
Trim pork and cut into two-centimetre squares. Marinate in one tbsp soy, one tbsp wine and all the five spice for at least 30 minutes.
Make a batter by combining flour with 180ml warm water and leave to sit. Mix cornflour with one tbsp water. Whisk egg white and fold through batter.
Heat oil in a wok and coat pork with batter. Fry in batches and place on paper towel when pork is cooked through and batter is golden brown. Place on a serving dish and keep warm. Discard oil.
Make tomato sauce mixture by mixing remaining soy, wine, tomato sauce, vinegar and sugar in 150ml water and stir to dissolve sugar.
Heat one-third of a cup of oil and fry onion, garlic and ginger for two minutes on high. Add capsicum and chestnuts and fry for two minutes. Add tomato sauce mixture and bring to a simmer. Stir through cornflour mixture. Once it has reboiled pour over pork, sprinkle with shallots and serve.
The batter in this recipe is quite thick and requires a little effort to get it to coat the pork. But it's well worth it as it gives a crisp, crunchy result.