With four ingredients and 15 mins, you can create a wonderful savory dish we call the “rice killer”, because it is so good that it will make you eat more!
My dad doesn’t eat pork. It is not religious, he simply doesn’t and I think I still don’t know why even though I’ve asked him many times. Every time my mom replied with a line she thinks is super humorous “He’d been bitten by a pig before”, I’m 80% sure she’s just joking… Since daddy doesn’t eat pork, pork dishes is a rare sight at our dinner table even though my mom is a amazing cook and her specialties includes pig’s feet, braised pork and pork dumplings. When ever my dad’s away on a business trip, my mom would make something different, something my dad wouldn’t eat for the both of us and this meatloaf was one of them.
Calling this “meatloaf” probably isn’t right, but just because the way it is shaped, it seems more like a meatloaf and my lack of imagination and better words to describe this dish I thought meatloaf is kind of appropriate. However, this dish is steamed rather than baked. 瓜子肉(gua1zi3rou4), is also called minced meat with pickle by some literally means pickle and meat, I thought “meatloaf” is a better name 🙂
I’ve probably only ever had this dish 10 times in my life but it is one of my favorites. It is so simple yet so comforting, the juicy ground pork soaked in juice of Taiwanese soy and vinegar pickled cucumber, the combination is magical without too much extra seasoning added to it. I love it for how it shows all the essence in the ingredients.
Taiwanese soy and vinegar pickled cucumber(醬瓜,jiang4gua1 or 脆瓜,cui4gua1) is salty, sweet, slightly sour and crunchy with flavors, unlike Western pickles. It is seen everywhere in supermarkets and convenient stores in Taiwan but it can be hard to find around here so I made my own! If you’d like to try this dish and couldn’t find the pickle, you can find out how to make it in this post. Taiwanese Soy and Vinegar Pickled Cucumber. It’s super easy I promise.
We bought the ground pork at the Rochester Downtown Farmers Market, I’m a sucker for small, local businesses and I also find that they usually have better quality product since the meat isn’t sitting at a open cooler all day. Fattier pork is suggested for the recipe, so the meatloaf isn’t too dry and stay juicy. There’s a trick to making this recipe with leaner pork tho, add an egg to your meatloaf mixture. It will help make the meat soft and smooth.
How easy is this meatloaf? All you need to do is chop up some pickle and garlic, mix all the ingredients together, let sit for 5 mins or longer for the meat to soak up all the yummy flavor then steam it! I have a double boiler so I made rice on the bottom layer while my meatloaf cooks on top! Multitask!! Stir fry some veg while everything else is steaming away then you’ve got yourself a perfect yummy dinner in no time.
This is also really tasty with noodles, by the way 😉
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- 1/2 C Taiwanese Soy and Vinegar Pickled Cucumber 醬瓜
- 5 Cloves of Garlic
- 1 lb Ground pork
- 3 T Soy Sauce
- 1/4 C Pickle juice from the Taiwanese pickle
- Roughly chop up into small pieces:1/2C Taiwanese Soy and Vinegar Pickled Cucumber (醬瓜)
5 Cloves of Garlic
- Mix all the ingredients in a heat safe bowl until the meat is sticky and form into shape
- Let sit for 10+ mins to marinade if you have time
- Steam for 15 mins or until the center is done