As food bloggers, we always look for tasty new dishes. A great way to spark creativity? Trying new restaurants and cuisines is a lot of fun! So, that’s where the inspiration for today’s dish, Spicy Stir-fried Rice Cakes, came from.
Tell Me About Chinese Rice Cakes
The rice cakes are a great addition to my recipes. In case you have yet to hear of them, they’re little sticky rice disks or ovals that are starchy and chewy. They remind me of a cross between gnocchi and Chinese dumplings. I’ve only ever eaten them in a few different preparations, but they go well in soups, hot pots, and stir-fries.
Rice cake stir-fry was a childhood staple, and the “traditional” version of the dish included pork, mushrooms, and veggies. Shepherd’s purse, a leafy green, was occasionally used in a Shanghainese variation that my mother or grandmother would prepare.
Now let’s get into the actual cooking of it.
- 8 oz. of thinly sliced pork belly
- 3 cloves of thinly sliced garlic
- 1 medium onion (cut into small wedges)
- 1-2 de-seeded and thinly sliced jalapeno peppers
- 2 sliced Thai red bird chilies (optional)
- 1 pound of rice cakes
- 3 scallions (2 inch lengths)
- 3 tablespoons of oil (divided)
- 1 tablespoon of minced ginger
- 1 tablespoon of Shaoxing wine
- 1 1/2 teaspoons of sugar
- 1 teaspoon of soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon of spicy bean paste
- 1/4 teaspoon of Sichuan peppercorn powder
- Put 1 tablespoon of oil in a wok and set it over high heat. Pork belly should be added and seared without stirring. After the pork belly has been browned and caramelized on one side, stir-fry it until it is opaque. Take out of the wok and put it to one side.
- Add two more teaspoons of oil to the wok and reduce the heat to medium. Throw in some ginger. Allow the oil to steep with the ginger for a minute. Add the garlic and cook for another 30 seconds.
- Toss in the onions, jalapenos, red chilies, and scallion whites, and return the stove to high heat. Then, after another minute of cooking, toss the rice cakes and Shaoxing wine. For 30 seconds, stir continuously while scraping the wok’s bottom. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover for one minute.
- After removing the lid, return the pork belly to the wok and add the remaining ingredients: soy sauce, sugar, Sichuan peppercorn powder, and spicy bean paste.
- Cook in a stir-fry until the rice cakes are firm. The green bits of the scallions should be stirred in until wilted and then served.