This Spicy Mango Pork Noodle Dinner Comes Together in Just One Skillet
In this week’s episode of F&W Cooks, Samantha Fore, owner and chef of Tuk Tuk Sri Lankan Bites, walks us through her recipe.
After showing viewers how to make her recipe for tempered curry-ginger sweet potatoes in a previous episode of F&W Cooks, Samantha Fore of Tuk Tuk Sri Lankan Bites is back in this week's episode—and this time, she's making spicy mango pork with noodles. Sliced pork tenderloin is marinated in a mixture of ground cumin, kosher salt, lime zest, lime juice, garlic, black pepper, and fresh ginger, combined with red onion, thinly sliced chile, and of course, mangoes, and served over rice noodles. The technique of tempering also comes into play in this recipe, helping to build flavor. In the end, the whole dish is ready in just over an hour—read on for Fore's step-by-step method and tips, and follow along with the video above.
Prep the Pork
Use a knife to remove excess fat from the pork tenderloin, and cut it into slices. Then, place the meat in a bowl with ground cumin, black pepper, kosher salt, finely chopped garlic and ginger, grated lime zest, and lime juice. Just like with the tempered curry sweet potatoes, Fore recommends peeling the ginger with a spoon—"this is the easiest way to do it because it wastes the least ginger," she says. She also rolls the lime on the cutting board before zesting and juicing, "so the juice yields are a little bit better."
Once everything is mixed together in the bowl and the pork is coated, Fore places it in the refrigerator, covered, to chill for 30 minutes. While the pork chills, Fore quickly shaves some cucumber and mixes it with lime juice, letting it sit.
Cut the Mangoes, Onions, and Pepper
Next up is the mango component of the recipe. Fore notes that since mangoes were out of season when she went to the market, she picked up frozen mangoes instead (fresh pineapple could also be an option). You'll want them peeled (if they're not already peeled) and cut into ¾-inch spears. Thinly slice one cup's worth of red onion as well, and 1 1/2 tablespoons of chile pepper. The recipe calls for a serrano chile, but Fore uses a jalapeño in the video. If you want the dish to have more heat, keep the seeds in; otherwise, seed the chile.
Fore also cooks the thin rice noodles, which she likes to use in this recipe for their flavor and texture.
Start Cooking—and Use Coconut Oil
When it's time to cook the pork, Fore heats a pan and adds in coconut oil—it's "very forgiving," she says, as it has a very high smoke point. In goes the pork, which browns for about five minutes. Then, Fore removes the pork, heats up more oil in the pan, and starts tempering (aka heating spices and/or aromatics in oil or ghee to bloom their flavor) mustard seeds. When bubbles form around the seeds, the onions, sliced chile, and mango go in. As the mixture heats up, Fore uses a wooden spoon to break down the mango.
Remove all but one cup of the mixture from the pan, and pour in one cup of hot water to form a mango sauce. Bring everything to a simmer and cook for three minutes; then, add the pork and remaining mango mixture back in, and cook until the pork is coated.
Add the cooked rice noodles to a bowl. Fore layers on some of the cucumbers next, and tops it all off with the pork-and-mango mixture—then, you're all set to eat.