Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Low-Carb Moo Shu Pork


 

 
I don’t know about you, but in my books there’s always food, and often quite a few meals. After all, everyone has to eat, right?

 In my sweet, romantic comedy, A Groom for Mama, Chinese food figures prominently. In fact, a Chinese meal—moo shu pork to be exact—is what the heroine Allison and the hero Jack were eating when they broke up.

 I have to admit, before writing this book I’d never eaten mu shoo pork, mostly because of the pancakes—I avoid eating too many carbs. But I liked the way the word rolled off my tongue, so I included it in my story. My favorite Chinese dish is Wor Sue Gai, which is widely believed to be a Cantonese American-inspired Chinese dish that originated in Columbus, Ohio. I used to stop at a Chinese restaurant when I worked in downtown and go for lunch and order Wor Sue Gai. Wor Sue Gai, literally means “wok seared chicken.”  It’s basically cooked chicken which is deboned, breaded and then fried, with a gravy sauce drizzled over the lettuce, almonds, and anything else on the plate. Yum gravy and chicken. For a girl raised on county food, what’s not to like? It’s been a long time since I’ve had that particular dish, mostly because no one in my area serves it any more.

 When we were first married we ate a lot of La Choy Chop Suey. Now if I do Chinese, it’s a quick stir fry full of veggies. I do love the stir fry at the local homestyle diner in our little town.


Chicken Stir Fry

But the night Allison and Jack broke up, they were eating moo shu pork, a dish that originated from Northern China. Moo shu pork is basically marinated stir fried pork combined with scrambled eggs, green onions, mushrooms and Chinese cabbage and rolled up in a thin pancake.

After writing this book, I decided I should try moo shu pork, so I came up with my own low carb version of the dish. Here’s a quick and easy way to make moo shu pork. If you don’t want to use low-carb pancakes (I use a low-carb, high-fiber, sugar-free mix called Maple Groves Farms of Vermont) or low-carb, high-fiber tortillas, you can make regular pancakes from scratch. Just make the batter thinner so the cakes are easy to roll up.

 

Catherine Castle’s Moo Shu Pork

 
Ingredients:

For Marinade:

2 Tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
1 Tablespoon oil
1-2 crushed garlic cloves
salt and pepper to taste

 
Other ingredients:

1 pound thinly sliced pork tenderloin or pork loin, sliced into strips
2 Baby bok choys
2-4 green onions, chopped
½ box fresh mushrooms, or one can of mushrooms, sliced
2 eggs
1 can sliced water chestnuts, cut into sticks
4 low-carb pancakes or low carb tortillas


Directions:
Mix marinade ingredients and place marinade and sliced pork in a closable, plastic bag. While you chop remaining ingredients, marinade the pork.  Discard marinade and stir fry pork over high heat in about 1 ½ teaspoons of oil until lightly browned. When the pork is cooked, remove from the pan and set aside. Add 1 ½ teaspoons more oil to the pan and scramble 2 eggs to soft set stage. Push eggs to side of pan and add sliced mushrooms, sliced green onions, sliced stems and leaves bok choy, and water chestnuts. Stir fry until mushrooms are cooked and bok choy has wilted and vegetables are heated through. Add pork and stir all ingredients together.

 



 
Place about ½ cup of the stir fry mix into the low-carb pancakes or low-carb tortillas, fold up bottom of tortilla, then sides, and serve. If you don’t like these veggies, feel free to substitute ones that you do like. This recipe makes about 4-6 rollups, depending on how much filling you place on each tortilla or pancake. This is also good without making it a hand-held meal.

 

Now here’s an excerpt from A Groom for Mama, the book that inspired my recipe.
 
 

A Groom for Mama

By Catherine Castle

 


Allison snapped her suitcase shut and shoved it under the bed. “I don’t want to talk about the one who got away, or any other man, Mama. They grab your heart and break it—just like Daddy did to you . . . to us.”

“Not all men are like your daddy,” Mama said. “There are good ones out there, too.”

“Not in my experience.” Allison gave her mother a hug. “I don’t want to talk about it anymore, okay?”

Mama’s silence told her she hadn’t heard the last of this subject. Her mother’s stomach growled, easing the way to a subject change.

Laughing, she asked, “Are you hungry, because I’m starving. Come on, I’ll fix you some lunch. How does your favorite—tuna salad—sound?”

“Lunch,” Mama echoed. “Oh, I forgot to tell you—Jack’s bringing something over.” The doorbell rang and Mama smiled sweetly. “You’d better run and answer the door, dear. I’m not taking the stairs too good, what with my arthritis and—”

Allison cut her off. “Please don’t say it, Mama.”

With a nod, Mama said, “Hurry then, before whoever it is thinks we’re not coming.”

“Do you need me to return and help you downstairs?”

“No thank you, dear. I can manage.”

Allison didn’t doubt that for a minute. Her already-stubborn mother grew more stubborn every day, if that was possible.

It’s just the situation. I won’t lose my temper when we’re both so stressed, she promised herself. Time is too precious to waste on arguing.

Bounding down the stairwell as the bell rang, she shouted, “I’m coming! I’m coming. Keep your pants on!” She threw the deadbolt off and jerked open the door.

Jack Somerset stood in front of her, his chin perched on top of a stack of Chinese take-out cartons. Shoving down her tingling gut reaction, she commanded her heart to stop jumping like an overexcited puppy.

Except for a few more laugh wrinkles around his eyes, Jack hadn’t changed a bit since college. His brown hair still dipped over his forehead in a shaggy mane. A lopsided smile spread across his face when he saw her. He winked at her, his green eyes twinkling.

“Well, if it isn’t the bride-to-be. Nice to see you again, Allison.” He jiggled the cartons balanced in his arms. “I brought Chinese. I remember it was your favorite. Moo shu pork, right?” He pushed past her and headed toward the kitchen, apparently as well acquainted with her childhood home as she.

Grabbing her head between her hands, she squeezed her temples.

Chinese. Of all the things he could have brought, he brought Chinese.

She’d broken it off with him in a Chinese restaurant . . . over moo shu pork. Very loudly and very violently. The pork and the pot of hot tea had landed in Jack’s lap when he tried to keep her from leaving the table. Did his choice of entrees mean Jack hadn’t forgotten the incident? She hadn’t, and she’d been unable to eat that particular Chinese dish since.

 

Want to read more? Go to Amazon to find A Groom for Mama

 

Don't forget to leave a comment to get your name in the drawing for Driver Confessional by David Winters! Winner will be announced in the January 29th edition of the Weekly Windup.

 

About the Author:

Multi-award-winning author Catherine Castle has been writing all her life. Before beginning her career as a romance writer she worked part-time as a freelance writer. She has over 600 articles and photographs to her credit, under her real name, in the Christian and secular market. Besides writing, Catherine loves traveling with her husband, singing, and attending theatre. In the winter she loves to quilt and has a lot of UFOs (unfinished objects) in her sewing case. In the summer her favorite place to be is in her garden. She’s passionate about gardening and even won a “Best Hillside Garden” award from the local gardening club.

 

Her debut inspiration romantic suspense, The Nun and the Narc, from Soul Mate Publishing was an ACFW Genesis Finalist, a 2014 EPIC finalist, and the winner of the 2014 Beverly Hills Book Award and the 2014 RONE Award. Her most recent release, A Groom for Mama, is a sweet romantic comedy from Soul Mate Publishing.  Both books are available on Amazon.
 
Social Media links:
Catherine’s website: https://catherinecastle1.wordpress.com
Catherine’s blog: http://catherinecastle1.wordpress.com/blog/
Catherine’s Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/author/catherinecastle
Catherine’s Goodreads page: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/7085414.Catherine_Castle
Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorCCastle    @AuthorCCastle
Facebook: https://facebook.com/catherinecastleauthor

 
Stitches Thru Time: http://stitchesthrutime.blogspot.com/
SMP authors blog site:   http://smpauthors.wordpress.com/

 



6 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing your recipe. Mmmm!

    ReplyDelete
  2. You're welcome. If you try it, I hope you enjoy it.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thanks for sharing behind the scene information along with your recipe. I would pass on the low carb tortilla shells and eat the Moo-shu-pork by itself just like I do a lot of other foods to reduce carbs further.
    A Groom for Mama sounds like a lot of laughter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's just as delicious without the carbs. Thanks for coming by.

      Delete
  4. My husband and I love Chinese food. I went to China almost 5 years ago. Due to me being highly allergic to MSG I was able to eat a rice dish and a noodle dish, after my friend explained about my allergy. I also went to a wedding. The wedding was beautiful and the food looked delicious. I couldn't eat any of it because it all had MSG in it. Thanks for entering me in your giveaway.
    Janet E.
    von1janet(at)gmail(dot)com

    ReplyDelete
  5. That's the beauty of fixing it at home. No MSG. Thanks for dropping by.

    ReplyDelete