the appetizer:

Cooking from the Heart: The Hmong Kitchen in America by Sami Scripter and Sheng Yang, includes recipes like Fish Larb (Laj Ntses); Whole Fish Steamed in Banana Leaves (Ntses Cub Xyaw Txuj Lom); and Stir-Fried Baby Bok Choy with Pork (Zaub Ntsuag Dawb kib xyaw Nqaij Npuas).



Stir-Fried Baby Bok Choy with Pork
Zaub Ntsuag Dawb kib xyaw Nqaij Npuas

Stir-Fried Baby Bok Choy with Pork

Makes 6 servings


Hmong people are especially fond of pork belly because it has wonderful textures and flavors. When cooked, the skin is chewy, the fat is soft and the lean meat is very tasty. Pork belly is usually sold in a slab. It is available at some mainstream supermarkets and most Asian grocery stores. This dish tastes best when it is made with an Asian-style bouillon cube. However, beware—it includes MSG as well as salt. If you prefer to avoid MSG, use a regular bouillon cube.



  • 1/2 pound pork belly
  • 1 bunch of baby bok choy (about 10 small heads)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 chicken bouillon cube (Asian-style, or regular)


Cut the pork belly slab into 1 by 1/8-inch pieces and set aside. Carefully wash the bok choy, pulling each leaf off of the head. Cut each leaf in two, from tip to stem. Drain on paper towels. Heat the oil in a wok over high heat. Add the pork, salt and the bouillon cube. Stir-fry about 10 minutes. Add the bok choy and stir fry about 5 more minutes. The dish is done when the meat is cooked, the bok choy leaves are limp, the stems are still a little crispy and a glossy glaze covers it all. Serve hot accompanied by fluffy jasmine rice.

  • from:
    Cooking from the Heart:
    The Hmong Kitchen in America
  • by Sami Scripter and Sheng Yang
  • University of Minnesota Press 2009
  • $29.95 cloth/jacket; 248 pages
  • ISBN-10: 0816653267
  • ISBN-13: 978-0-8166-5326-3
  • Recipe reprinted by permission.

Buy Cooking from the Heart


Cooking from the Heart


This page created July 2009

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