Friday, November 20, 2009

accidental sweet & sour sauce

My kiddos simply love sweet & sour meat, especially HQ. When there is sweet & sour meat on the menu, he eats at record speed :-D.

I attempted to cook this dish a few times before, but according to my fussy pot, my sweet sour meat is "Not nice. Popo cook nicer." :-(. Problem is, I cooked exactly like how popo taught me! So how come not nice??? *scratch head*

Then, this friend of mine posted this recipe on her blog. Her secret to succulent and tender meat is to tap the slices of meat with the cleaver. Clever ya?

- Hubby only eats lean meat and so I used lean meat. First I cut the meat to bite-sized pieces (about 2 inch squares). I followed her tip and whacked the pieces of meats without mercy. This step really tenderized the meat and made chewing so much easier for kids.

- Next, I marinated the meat (had time to marinate for 10 minutes only and didn't add cooking wine). I think the egg made the meat really tasty.

- Coated them in cornflour and fried them. After frying, they do looked good enough to eat, isn't it? - When it's time to mix the sweet & sour sauce, I discovered I do not have any tomato ketchup in my refrigerator... not even the fast food sachet kind. Oh dear... how? Lacking of ingredients often happen in this household :-S. Time to innovate...

- I found a can of whole tomatoes. I mixed the whole tomatoes (mashed) and sugar together, but it tasted horrible

- Rummaged the fridge and added a few ingredients *crossed my fingers*. I let the mixture simmer in a separate saucepan until thickens, and guess what? I had a winner sweet & sour sauce!

Accidental Sweet & Sour Sauce
1 can whole tomatoes - mashed
9 tablespoons sugar
6 tablespoons plum sauce (leftover in the fridge)
3 tablespoons lemon juice

The above is definitely too much for one sweet and sour dish. I spooned the remaining into a Lock & Lock container and put it into the freezer. Now I have sweet & sour sauce ready to use anytime! :-D

I think the plum sauce and lemon juice really turned the canned tomatoes around. They tasted so wonderful together! Just the correct amount of sweetness and sourness! I bet it will taste really great with chili sauce added as well!

So, if you're like me, and find yourself without any ketchup at home, try my accidental sweet & sour sauce. You'll be really surprised with the result. But if you have tomato ketchup, do try Penny's recipe :-).

Here's the final dish, meat pieces, carrot and onions in my accidental sweet & sour sauce (see the bits of mashed canned tomatoes?). Since I have ready sweet & sour sauce in the freezer now, I cook this dish more often. Tried ma yau fish with tomato wedges (sorry, I already dug half the fish before I remember to snap a photo). And fried chicken breast and canned pineapples. Yummy!My sweet & sour sauce is discovered accidentally, but it really gave a twist to the final dish... slightly different but yummy. My whole family, including my fussy pot loves it.

As a teacher in elementary & secondary education you will turn young ones to read, write, love to learn, and create their own master pieces - maybe not as good as this one, but close.

© Lee Pei Yi. All rights reserved. Originally published for All images and text cannot be republished without express written permission.


smallkucing said...

That's what I call innovation!

UmmiRosma said...

That's y we as mothers need to be creative in the kitchen....coming up with something surprising out of the left-overs and bits and littles!

Those dishes are yummy-looking and I will try them soon....

wenn said... kids love sweet n sour meat too..

Mummy Gwen said...

You are good. All dishes look absolutely delicious. :D

Uncle Lee said...

Hi Boey Boey, wow! Love your this dish. Outstanding.
Where you got your Black Belt in cooking? From your mom or trial and error.
Looking at this dish I will confidently say its a 3 plates of rice and loud burps, ha ha.
And women who can cook are dangerous, to bachelors. I would have been a bachelor longer if a woman had not hit me below the belt...with her cooking, ha ha.

Psssst, I love that necklace....wear that with your Oscar de La Renta cocktail dress and Jimmy Choo shoes, you'll be the cause of people having neck, ha ha.
You have a pleasant weekend, have fun cooking and don't forget the chiki red lipstick, Lee.
ps, just as you popped into my place, I happen to unleashed my new posting. Drop by for coffee and memories when free.

2ma said...

wow, am hungry looking at the photos now! well done!

BoeyJoey said...

smallkucing: Hee hee... no choice liao :-P

UmmiRosma: Haha... I love to see your cooking posts too :-)

wenn: Seems like sweet & sour meat are all kids' favourite :-)

Mummy Gwen: Thanks thanks :-)

Uncle Lee: Hahaha... what black belt, more like "half pail of water" :-P. Yes, I read about how you were captivated with your wife's initiative in learning to cook Nyonya dishes.

I wish I have that dress and Jimmy Choo, although can't promise I'll be able to turn heads... hahaha. Will hop by, your blog is always a good read :-).

2ma: :-)

little prince's mummy said...

Yummy sweet & sour dishes!

Pet said...

My hubby favorite dish! Every time go out eat must order this! At least I love tomato too... else masam muka dee, every time order the same dish.

Kelvin said...

this is my favorite chinese dish^^

nizaa said...

i think i want to give a try to your accidental sweet & sour sauce...i am lack of idea lately...:)

blessed mom said...

amazing! given me, i will be at a loss at what to do!

A Mom's Diary said...

How come you have canned tomatoes at home one geh? For bolognese sauce?

Uncle Lee said...

Pssst, next time use papaya leaves, rub on the meat make it tender. Lee.

BoeyJoey said...

little prince's mummy: :-)

nizaa: oh, do try... nice with chicken and fish as well :-)

Kelvin: My family's fav too. Hey, thanks for dropping by :-)

A Mom's Diary: When there's sales, I always buy a few cans to keep at home, as I read that canned tomatoes has the most lycopene (even more than fresh tomatoes). I use canned tomatoes for pasta sauce (canned tomatoes, basil, mixed herbs, sugar, onion, garlic, sometimes chopped carrots & celery, meatballs).

blessed mum: Desperate case ma...

Uncle Lee: Thanks for the tip! :-)

Penny said...

wow..i was quite sometime nver login to my blog..cos lately i've been helping at my bro's office since mths ago. It's glad to know that u finally made it with my recipe! :-)

Sarah's Daddy and Mommy said...

Sweet and sour also my husband's fav dish. And you are right, adding some pineapple into it giving an extra kick to the dish. Good job mommy!


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