Recipes from The Huangshan Mountains (Anhui Province), China: Spicy Walnut Pork

Recipes from The Huangshan Mountains (Anhui Province, China)

Spicy Walnut Pork

Country: The Huangshan Mountains (Anhui Province, China)
Course: Main
Makes: 2 to 4 servings


  • About 20 fresh walnut halves
  • Boiling water to cover
  • Peanut oil
  • 4 oz pork loin, sliced into thin 2”x1” strips
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 large egg, beaten
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 4 oz water chestnuts, sliced*
  • 3 red jalapeno peppers, or 1 small red bell pepper, seeded and sliced
  • 4 green onions, cut into 1-inch lengths
  • 2 tbsp light soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp good dark vinegar
  • 6 tbsp sugar
  • 3 tbsp rice wine
  • 1 tsp sesame oil


  1. Heat some water to boiling, then remove from heat. Add the walnut halves and let sit for 10 minutes. Drain, rinse and pat dry.
  2. Heat about a cup of oil in a wok, if you have one. I don’t, so I just used a small pot. The oil is ready when bubbles rise around the end of a wooden spoon. Now add the walnuts and let fry for a few minutes. When they are a golden brown color, they’re finished. Remove from the oil with a slotted spoon and let drain on paper towels. Reserve the cooking oil in the pot.
  3. Sprinkle a little bit of salt on the pork strips. Now place a walnut half on one end, roll up and secure with a toothpick. Repeat with all the strips and walnuts.
  4. Mix the beaten egg with the cornstarch. Now heat the oil again until it passes the wooden spoon test. Coat the pork and walnut pieces in the batter (shaking off the excess) and drop into the hot oil.
  5. Let fry until the batter is golden. Discard the toothpicks and keep warm.
  6. Using about 2 tbsp of the frying oil, cook the water chestnuts, peppers and green onions for a few minutes until tender-crisp. Add the pork and the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar and rice wine. Let the sauce reduce down, then remove from the heat. Toss with the sesame oil and serve.