Food & Drink

Spice things up with this five-spice stir-fried pork

Five Spice Pork and Rice Stir-Fry.
Five Spice Pork and Rice Stir-Fry. Tribune News Service

The exciting flavors of Chinese cuisine are captured in this five-spice stir-fried pork. Five-spice powder is a mixture of five ground spices usually consisting of cinnamon, cloves, fennel seed, star anise and Szechuan peppercorns. It gives a pungent, aromatic flavor to this quick dish.

It can be found in the spice section of the supermarket.

You only need a little for this recipe of mine, but I like to keep it on hand to sprinkle on cooked vegetables, over rice or in salad dressings to create an Asian touch.

Chinese recipes need a few extra minutes to assemble the ingredients, but take only a few minutes to cook. This stir-fry dinner is ready in less than 10 minutes.

Fred Tasker’s wine suggestion: Spicy pork would go nicely with a lush white viognier.

Helpful Hints

▪ Leftover rice can be used instead of the brown rice.

▪ White vinegar diluted with a little water can be used instead of rice vinegar.

▪ Boneless loin pork chops can be used instead of pork tenderloin.

▪ Your wok or skillet should be very hot so the meat and vegetables will be crisp, not steamed.


▪ Make rice.

▪ Assemble ingredients.

▪ Complete dish.

Shopping List

Here are the ingredients you'll need for tonight’s Dinner in Minutes.

To buy: 1 package microwaveable brown rice (to make 1 1/2 cups cooked), 1 bottle rice vinegar; 1 bottle Chinese five-spice powder; 1 bottle low-sodium soy sauce, 3/4 pound pork tenderloin, 1 red bell pepper and 1 package slivered almonds.

Staples: Canola oil, garlic, onion, flour, fat-free, low-salt chicken broth, salt and black peppercorns.


1 package microwaveable brown rice (to make 1 1/2 cups cooked)

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup fat-free, low-salt chicken broth

2 tablespoons rice vinegar

1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder

3 medium garlic cloves, crushed

1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce

1 tablespoon canola oil

3/4 pound pork tenderloin, cut into 1/2-inch cubes or stir-fry pork

1 cup sliced onion

1 red bell pepper, seeded and sliced (about 1 cup)

1 tablespoon flour

2 tablespoons slivered almonds

Cook brown rice in the microwave according to package instructions. Remove and measure 1 1/2 cups cooked rice. Save remaining rice for another meal. Add salt and pepper to taste and set aside.

Mix chicken broth, rice vinegar, Chinese five-spice powder, garlic and soy sauce together. Set aside. Heat oil in a wok or nonstick skillet over high heat. Add pork and onion and stir-fry 2 minutes. Add red bell pepper and continue to stir-fry 1 minute. Sprinkle flour over ingredients and toss. Add sauce to wok and toss 2 minutes. Remove to a bowl. Add rice to wok and toss 1 minute. Divide rice between 2 dinner plates and spoon pork and sauce over rice. Sprinkle almonds on top.

Per serving: 533 calories (29 percent from fat), 17 g fat (2.4 g saturated, 9.3 g monounsaturated), 108 mg cholesterol, 44.6 g protein, 49.1 g carbohydrates, 5.9 g fiber, 381 mg sodium.

Makes 2 servings.