Triple Pork Mazeman with Roasted Garlic and Pea Tips

Recently, my mom tried out Blue Apron for a couple of weeks. It is a meal service that delivers ingredients right to your door. You can choose the frequency and my mom was on a plan for 3 meals per week that serve two people each. That totaled about $60, which actually isn’t *too bad* of a price. The neat thing about Blue Apron is that everything is sent in neat little packaging and contains the precise amount of each needed ingredient.

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My mom ended up canceling her subscription, because the price did add up after awhile, plus she is not quite as adventurous of an eater as I am, and Blue Apron really offers a wide variety of dishes, an she is more of a meat and potatoes type of gal. Though she did like that it helped her prepare even simple vinaigrette from scratch, the type of thing she is not inclined to make on her own (similar to most people!). Similarly, this recipe calls for a pork demi-glace, which is basically a fancy rich, thick type of stock. I don’t think I would ever make it on my own, but you can google recipes for it, but I am not sure where you might find it in a store.

In any case, my mom gave me one of her meals, which was this Triple Pork Mazeman. It was delicious! It turns out that mazeman is a type of ramen, but it is dry, and made with a thin sauce instead of a broth, allowing the toppings to take on center stage, in this Japanese dish, according to the recipe page!

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Triple Pork Mazeman with Roasted Garlic and Pea Tips

serves 2

Ingredients:
-5oz ground pork
-1 slice bacon
-12oz fresh ramen noodles
-2oz pea tips
-1 bunch garlic chives
-1 head of garlic
-2tbsp pork demi-glace
-2tbsp soy sauce
-2tbsp mirin
-1-in. piece of ginger
-1tsp pork mazeman spice blend (black sesame seeds, white sesame seeds, kibbled nori and sansho pepper)

Directions:
-Preheat the oven to 475F. Cut off and discard the top of the garlic head (to expose the cloves). Place it on a piece of aluminum foil, then drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Tightly wrap the foil around it, place on a cookie sheet, and roast for 28-30 minutes. Set it aside, to cool.
-While the garlic is roasting, heat a large pot of salted water to boiling (you’ll come back to this later). Dice the bacon into very small pieces, mince the garlic chives, cut the pea tips into one inch pieces, and peel and mince the ginger.
-In a medium pot, heat one teaspoon of oil on medium. Once hot, add the bacon and cook for about 3-4 minutes, or until browned and crispy.
-To the bacon pot, add the ginger and all but one pinch of the garlic chives. Cook, stirring often, for 2-3 minutes, or until soft and fragrant. Add the ground pork and cook for 4-5 minutes or until heated through, breaking the meat apart with a spoon; season with salt and pepper, then remove it from the heat.
-When the garlic is done and has cooled enough to touch, squeeze the individual cloves out of the head. Add the pork demi-glace, soy sauce, mirin, roasted garlic cloves, and one cup of water to the pot with the pork mixture, and stir to combine. Turn to high to bring to a boil; once boiling, reduce it back to medium and let it simmer, while stirring, for 2-3 minutes, until it reduces in volume.
-While the sauce is simmering, add the noodles to the pot of boiling water and cook and stir for 90 seconds (no longer), then drain well and immediately add it to the sauce pot. Cook and stir constantly for 1-2 minutes, then turn off the heat. Stir in pea tips and season with salt and pepper to taste.
-Spoon the finished product into each bowl and then top with the remaining chives and spice blend.

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