The Year of the Rooster!

The Lunar New Year is this Saturday, January 28th and it will kick off my year, the year of the Rooster! I was so lucky to get to celebrate Tet (as we call it in Vietnamese) early with my mom and sister, who are in town to hang out with Asa and to help us settle in to our new house.

This year’s menu includes one of my favorite Chinese dishes, Mu Shu Pork. The pancakes are fun to make at home, but you could easily substitute with tortillas for a store-bought shortcut. And the peanut noodles are the easiest and most delectable noodles ever. Pasta, Kentuckyaki, and peanut butter magically meld into a super tasty and quick entree.

Mu Shu Pork


  • 1 lb pork loin, cut into strips
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 4 tbsp Kentuckyaki, divided
  • 3 tsp peanut oil, divided
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 4 oz fresh shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp ginger, minced
  • 4 scallions, white and green parts separated, sliced
  • 3 cups thinly sliced cabbage
  • 2 large carrots, julienne
  • Salt and pepper
  • Hoisin sauce, for serving

In a medium bowl, toss the pork in the cornstarch and add 2 tbsp of Kentuckyaki. Brush a nonstick pan with some peanut oil and heat over medium high heat. Cook the eggs in thin crepes by pouring some beaten egg in the pan and swirling around. Cook until set and flip once. Once all the crepes are done, stack them up, roll them into a cylinder, and thinly shred with a sharp knife. Set aside.

Heat one tsp of peanut oil in a large pan over high heat and stir fry the mushrooms until nicely browned. Transfer to a separate platter and using more peanut oil, cook the pork in batches. Transfer to a separate platter and add the garlic, ginger, and scallion whites. Saute for 1-2 minutes, then add the cabbage, carrots, and reserved mushrooms. Add remaining 2 tbsp Kentuckyaki and reserved egg ribbons. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve with hoisin sauce, scallion greens, and pancakes, below.

Mu Shu Pancakes


  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1/2 tsp vegetable oil

Mix flour and water with a wooden spoon to form a rough dough. Then turn out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth. Cover and let rest for 30 minutes. Roll the dough into a rope and cut into 12 pieces. Flatten each piece into a round disk and brush six of them with sesame oil. Top each brushed piece of dough with another dough ball to create six pairs. Using a rolling pin, roll into thin, round pancakes about 7-8 inches in diameter. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and grease with vegetable oil. Cook the pancakes on both sides for 1-2 minutes, until they are no longer doughy and lightly browned in spots. While still warm, separate each pancake at the seams to create 12 pancakes.

Honey Roasted Peanut Noodles


  • 12 oz box fettucine, linguine, or spaghetti
  • 1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 1/3 cup Kentuckyaki
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tsp hot sauce
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/4 cup honey roasted peanuts, chopped
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, diced

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook pasta until al dente. While pasta is cooking, spoon out 1/4 cup of the hot pasta water and mix with the peanut butter, Kentuckyaki, honey, and hot sauce. When pasta is done cooking, toss with the sauce and top with cilantro, roasted peanuts, and diced red bell pepper.