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Stir Fry with Pork Meatballs and Chili Oil

Stir Fry with Pork Meatballs and Chili Oil

Garth Brown |

Stir Fry with Pork Meatballs, Ramen Noodles, and Chili Oil

Smoky, Savory, Spicy, and Complex

First I must admit that this dish is my wife Alanna’s creation. I should also acknowledge that it’s a bit more complicated than most of the recipes I’ve been posting recently. But this is mostly because it has a longer ingredient list. The actual technique is very straightforward, and if you read through the recipe you’ll see that it comes together quite quickly.

Three Dishes in One

The reason this recipe is on the long side is that it is actually three separate dishes that combine into one glorious meal. The first component is a fiery chili oil, which can be made any time and kept on hand for anything that would benefit from a shot of heat. The second dish is pork meatballs with a distinctive complex smokiness from seared green onions. The third dish is a simple vegetable and ramen noodle stir fry.

While you are welcome to make any of these separately, they do fit marvelously together, and they can all be prepared more or less simultaneously, which means the actual cooking time isn’t prohibitive, even for a weeknight meal.

Lots of Options

One great thing about this recipe is that it works well with almost any combination of vegetables. you can substitute beef or turkey for the pork. Make it as spicy or as mild as you like by adding more or less of the chili oil. It’s a very flexible framework for pulling together a remarkably complex blend of complimentary flavors.

Stir Fry with Pork Meatballs, Ramen Noodles, and Chili Oil

Spicy, smoky, rich, and complex, this stir fry is a lively and satisfying one plate meal
Course Main Course
Cuisine Chinese
Keyword pork, spicy
Prep Time 40 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Servings 4


For chili oil

  • ½ cup neutral oil high oleic sunflower or similar
  • 1 inch ginger root peeled and chopped
  • 2 cloves chopped
  • 1 tbsp red pepper flakes
  • 1 tbsp Sichuan peppercorns
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp toasted sesame oil

For meatballs

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 green onions
  • 1 pound ground pork pastured if possible
  • 1 tbsp tapioca flour all purpose flour can be substituted
  • 1 tsp powdered gelatin
  • ½ tsp salt

For stir fry

  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 medium carrot
  • 4 oz green beans
  • 4 oz ramen noodles
  • ½ bunch of fresh kale
  • 2 tsp soy sauce


  • Heat ginger and garlic in neutral oil over medium heat until small bubbles begin to form. Remove from heat and add Sichuan peppercorns, pepper flakes, salt, and sesame oil. Let cool to room temperature.
  • Prepare the vegetables: peel carrot and cut it into thin strips, slice the onion, destem and cut the kale into ribbons, and remove stems from green beans.
  • Preheat oven to 375°.
    Cut roots and the tops from the green onions, leaving the white and the pale green portion of each. Put them in a large frying pan with olive oil and sear over medium heat until they are just starting to char at the edges. Remove the onions, but save the oil in the pan for cooking vegetables.
  • Start heating a medium pot of water on the stove.
    Finely chop the seared green onions and combine them with pork, flour, salt, and gelatin. Thoroughly mix, then form into 1" meatballs. Place these in a baking dish and bake until they reach an internal temperature of 160°, about 15 minutes.
  • While the meatballs are cooking, saute the vegetables over medium-high heat in the pan used to sear the green onions. First, add onions and carrots. After they have cooked for about six minutes add the beans. If at any time the vegetables start to scorch, reduce heat!
    Start cooking ramen in boiling water.
    When the other vegetables are cooked through but still crisp, add kale.
  • When noodles are cooked, drain and add to the pane of vegetables. Add soy sauce and mix thoroughly.
  • Put a generous pile of noodle stir fry on a plate, top with meatballs, and drizzle as much chili oil as you can stand over the top.


•Chili oil can be made ahead of time if kept in the fridge. Just let it warm up to room temperature before serving.
•Try to cook the vegetables fast, so that they remain crisp, but be careful not to scorch them.
•Though this recipe has an extensive ingredient list, it actually cooks quickly. Read through it and you should get an idea for the order of preparation and how everything comes together.

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