Easy Stir-fried Pork with Spring Onions

This is a basic stir-fried dish in the southern Chinese tradition which my mother made when she felt lazy or was pressed for time. It took just minutes to assemble and cook. Variations were endless: in the spring she would add asparagus; in the summer, bitter melon, sometimes even cucumber. However, the one I remember best is this version, with just spring onions. The key to success here is not to overcook the pork.


  • 450 g (1 lb) boneless pork loin chops
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing rice wine or dry sherry
  • 1 tablespoon light soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon cornflour
  • 8 spring onions
  • 1 tablespoon groundnut oil, plus 1 teaspoon if needed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Β½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon sugar


Cut the pork into slices 5 cm (2 in) long and 5 mm (ΒΌ in) thick. Put the sliced pork into a bowl and mix in the rice wine, soy sauce, sesame oil and cornflour. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes so that the pork absorbs the flavours of the marinade. Cut the spring onions on the diagonal into 5 cm (2 in) lengths.

Heat a wok or frying pan to a very high heat. Swirl in the groundnut oil and, when it is very hot and slightly smoking, add the pork slices and stir-fry them until they are lightly brown, about 1 minute. Remove the pork and quickly toss in the spring onions, salt, pepper and sugar. If it seems too dry, swirl in 1 more teaspoon of groundnut oil. Continue to stir-fry the spring onions for 30 seconds, then toss in the pork and stir-fry until the meat is cooked and slightly firm. This should take about 3 minutes. Remove the pork and arrange it on a warm serving platter. Pour any juices remaining in the wok over the pork and serve at once.