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Korean Pork Lettuce Wraps

February 2, 2012


This past weekend Scott and I were in Delaware visiting his parents. On Saturday night after dinner, his Mom flicked on the TV to a show she’d previously DVR’d, The Kimchi Chronicles, which follows Marja Vongerichten (wife of Jean-George) as she eats her way through South Korea and shows the viewers how to prepare the various mouthwatering meals. I’ve never really gotten into Korean food, just out of a lack of resources, but its healthy and tasty, and heavily favors pork… I’m officially smitten! While we were watching Marja slurping noodles and grilling pork belly, I noticed right on the coffee table in front of me was the coinciding cookbook!

With a mission to explore some Korean cuisine on Sunday night, we stopped at a Korean grocery store in Delaware on the way back to Philly (what convenient fate!). I’d jotted down one of the recipes from Marja’s book for stir-fried pork, so we picked up some accoutrements like glazed soybeans and seaweed salad to accompany our meal. This dinner was fairly easy to put together, and pretty darn healthy (I love that a lot of Korean food is eaten wrapped in lettuce)! The only ingredients that you may be unfamiliar with are the hot red pepper paste and red pepper powder, which are frequently used in Korean cooking and can be found at most Asian grocery stores.

Korean Pork Lettuce Wraps from The Kimchi Chronicles

  • 2 1/2 TBSP soy sauce
  • 1 TBSP soju (Korean rice wine), sake, vodka, or water
  • 2 tBSP red pepper paste
  • 1 tBSP red pepper powder
  • 1 TBSP sugar
  • 3 Scallions, thinly sliced
  • 2 TBSP finely minced yellow onion
  • 2 Garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 TBSP finely minced fresh ginger
  • 1 Pound pork loin, thinly sliced
  • 2 TBSP vegetable oil
  • 1 Carrot, cut into strips
  • 4 Fresh shitake mushrooms, stems discarded and caps cut into 1/3-inch slices
  • 1 fresh long red chile pepper, seeded and finely slivered (optional)
  • 1 small handful snow or snap peas, halved lengthwise
  • A bunch of Red Leaf lettuce leaves
  • Chopped scallion (to top)
  • Cucumber cut into small matchsticks (to top)
  • Kimchi (to top)

Whisk together the soy sauce, soju, red pepper paste, red pepper powder, sugar, scallions, onion, garlic, and ginger in a large bowl. Add the pork and stir to coat. Cover and let marinate at room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes.

Heat 2 TBSP of oil in a large nonstick skillet or wok over high heat. Add the pork with all of its marinade. Cook, stirring now and then, until beginning to caramelize, about 2 minutes. Add the carrot, shitake, chile pepper, and peas and another drop or two of oil if necessary. Continue to stir and cook until the pork is cooked through and the vegetables are just tender, 3 to 4 minutes.

Serve wrapped in leaves of lettuce, topped with scallions, fresh cucumber and of course, kimchi!

Hope you enjoy this light and yummy meal!

3 Comments leave one →
  1. February 5, 2012 4:44 pm

    Delicious, and always good idea for a lunch in this cold winter days 🙂

  2. February 11, 2012 8:50 pm

    These look absolutely delicious! I absolutely love Korean food and the flavor of their spices.


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