My eldest just ‘graduated’ from daycare recently and we have been spending time together before he begins kindergarten (‘maternelle’ as they call it in Quebec) in September. I have been taking note of lunchbox-friendly foods for him to bring to school as it will be his first time bringing food packed from home. One dish I will definitely be putting into rotation will be this ginger pork dish!
Packed lunch ideas
I’m not too keen on giving him foods to be heated by microwave ovens on a daily basis, so I am planning on bringing him some lunches that can be eaten safely without being heated up (they have refrigerators in the classroom to keep the lunches cold). Another alternative would be vacuum food jars for stews, chilis or soups. I think he would appreciate that when winter comes around. Oh, and if you are looking for packed lunch recipes, Bethany over at Adventures in Partaking has a wonderful roundup of lunch box recipes, totally AIP-compliant!
Shogayaki is a Japanese pork dish pan-fried with ginger marinade. Often made with very thinly sliced pork, it’s a flavoursome and easy to make ginger pork dish. If you cannot find thinly sliced boneless pork chops, you can get a boneless pork loin and par-freeze it before slicing it thinly with a sharp knife.
Making this ginger pork dish AIP-compliant
Coconut aminos replaces the traditional soya sauce here, and white balsamic vinegar gives it a sweet and yet slightly tangy counterbalance. I used a light and sweet white balsamic vinegar from a local speciality olive oil and vinegar store, but I think any good supermarket brand should do the trick too (be sure to check the ingredients list). If you don’t want to use white balsamic vinegar, I think a tablespoon of honey and a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar or lime juice would make a nice alternative too.
The use of both fresh and ground ginger complements without overwhelming the ginger pork dish, and the end result after cooking is mellow. My kids don’t really like the spicy bite of fresh ginger, but they ate this dish enthusiastically.
Traditionally served with rice and plenty of crisp shaved cabbage, I would serve the ginger pork with a simple cauliflower rice dish to replace the rice (in keeping with avoiding grains while on the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol). Otherwise, it would make a nice topping for a large green salad.
What is your preferred portable AIP lunch? Do share in the comments below!
Where to purchase certain ingredients online (affiliate links):
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 2lb thinly sliced pork loin
- 1 knob ginger (1 teaspoon grated)
- Approximately ½ medium onion (1/4 cup grated)
- ¼ teaspoon ground ginger
- ¼ cup coconut aminos
- 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
- 2 tablespoons avocado oil
- Sprinkle sea salt over the pork loins on both sides and set aside (use a little less if you prefer the pork to be less salty)
- Make the sauce mixture by combining the rest of the ingredients except for the avocado oil and set aside
- Heat the avocado oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat
- Pan-fry the pork loin for a minute on each side, in batches if necessary, then remove and set aside (with resulting juices from frying)
- Return the pork loin slices to the pan and lower the heat to medium
- Pour the sauce mixture over the pork and cook for another 1 to 2 minutes, flipping the pork slices to ensure that both sides get coated with sauce, then remove from heat and serve
Serving suggestions: With shaved cabbage salad or any other crisp salad
Garnish with microgreens if preferred.