I love a bargain. My big problem is what psychiatrists might call “Value driven impulse purchasing”. “Half-price menswear” – keep me out of the shop or I will buy up every pair of lavender coloured trousers and those gingham shirts that most sensible men on the planet have ignored. The “bargains” I buy usually spend a period of time in the wardrobe before being transferred to the charity-shop bag and out of my life. This behaviour is all the worse because I know that I do it. Yet seemingly, I can’t help myself. So, when I saw some lovely looking plums in the supermarket at 49c for a half kilo, you can guess what happened.
But for once, my impulse led to great value and it led to a really delicious meal with a Spicy Plum Ginger Sauce at it’s heart. Here’s what you need to prepare it.
Ingredients for the sauce
- 1 kilo of ripe plums
- 2cm piece of fresh root ginger
- Half teaspoon of chilli flakes
- 3 star anise
- 1 ablespoon of palm sugar
- Generous pinch of sea salt
To go with the “bargain” sauce
- 2 good pork chops
- A handful of green beans
- Splash of soy sauce
- Salt and black pepper
The sauce is really easy to prepare. Cut the ginger into small pieces. Place all the sauce ingredients (along with a splash of water to get things going) into a saucepan and apply medium heat. Place a lid on and let the plums break down as they cook.
Stir the mixture occasionally. When the plums are very soft, bash them up a bit with a wooden spoon to get the stones separated. Simmer for about twenty minutes over a low heat. Sieve the sauce and keep warm.
Season the pork chops very well. Then slice them into strips. Chop the beans into small pieces. Follow the packet instructions on the noodles. Heat a wok or frying pan. Add a little oil and fry the pork over a high heat. Add a splash of soy sauce and the green beans. Stir until the soy starts to caramelise on the pork.
Put the noodles on a plate. Place the pork and beans on top. Artistically drizzle the sauce over it.
Be prepared to have your concept of value turned on it’s head. This sauce is really amazing. It is fruity, zesty and leaves a lovely ginger afterglow that is enhanced by the gentle chilli flavour. I would encourage you to try it, even if you have to spend more than I did for the plums. Now, does anybody want to make me an offer for six pairs of skinny jeans in pink? They looked like a real bargain….