Outside my window, the monsoon was announcing its arrival by throwing around vicious bolts of lightning and thunder was growling loudly. Inside my stomach, hunger was sending its pangs out equally noisily.
The dark Sunday afternoon seemed perfect for a hot, soupy kind of meal, something warm and comforting, something like a mother’s hug on a cold, wet rainy day.
A rich hearty broth was what I had in mind when I strode into the kitchen and whipped open my refrigerator. I had already ticked up pork, potatoes and onions when I spotted some carrots, and rummaging further, discovered a cabbage. Carrots in a broth? Yes of course. But cabbage? Not usual but not unusual too, it gets my nod.
And then my eyes spot the bottle of Teriyaki marinade tucked away neatly in a corner of the refrigerator and several light bulbs go off simultaneously in my brain. Whoa! Go easy light bulbs, I get the idea.
The sweet, earthy note of the Teriyaki would add the perfect twist to the tangy, smoky flavour of the Worcestershire sauce that I always add to stews and broths, a perfect balance to round out the taste. Am I a genius or what!
Excited, I get down to cooking.
500g pork, cubed; 2 potatoes, cubed; 2 onions, quartered; 10 cloves of garlic, crushed then finely chopped; 2 carrots, cut into 2” pieces and then halved; ¼ small cabbage, roughly cut; 2 x 1” pieces of cinnamon; 1 star anise; 1 tbsp peppercorns, whole; 3 tbsp Teriyaki marinade; 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce; 2 cups water; 1 tbsp vegetable oil; salt to taste; 1 tsp corn flour for thickening, if required.
Marinate the pork in the Teriyaki sauce for 2 hours. Cook in a pressure cooker till done. Heat a large pot and add oil. Add the garlic and stir fry until the aroma of garlic is released. Add all the other vegetables and stir fry for 2-3 minutes to seal their juices. Add the pork, Worcestershire sauce, peppercorns, water and salt and bring to a boil. Turn heat down and simmer for 10 minutes or until the potatoes are done. Add corn flour to thicken if you so desire.
Eat with country bread, brun pao or steamed rice. Purr in satisfaction.