Pork in a can? Are you serious? Who would eat that stuff? Wait, it is not just pork. It is pork leg in a can!

Chinese loves their canned food. Be it vegetables or meat, especially pork. Canned pork has been hugely popular Chinese New Year food item. They are used to stuff hampers and gift boxes for Chinese New Year courtesy gifts to colleagues, friends or business partners and customers. There are several types of canned pork, pork ribs or pork legs. Usually they are pre-cooked with soy sauce and mushrooms.

We cook canned pork at home during Chinese New Year too. It is a cherished tradition. At other times of the year, I’d sneer at the thought of canned food! Not a big fan. But there are certain occasions when they are really enjoyed, and it would be quite weird if they are not served!

One of the dishes, or rather, the only dish we have at home using the canned pork is vermicelli with pork leg and mushroom stir fry. It is very quick to prepare. It can feed a lot of people. Which is perfect for emergency lunch when we have guests who drop by during lunch time and we haven’t got enough food to feed everyone!

This is the canned pork leg with mushroom. The thick gravy that comes out from the can with big chunk of pork leg. Delicious! Who came up with that idea? Pork leg in a can! Must be one smart man (or woman)!

And the dried vermicelli. Soak them in cold water for 30 minutes or longer.

This is how the vermicelli looked like at the end of soaking time. Drain well and set aside.

Some grated carrot.

Some shredded cabbage.

No vermicelli stir fry without some itsy bitsy bean sprouts.

Pour the whole can of pork leg (with the liquid) into a big wok. The wok should be big enough to hold the amount of vermicelli you are going to cook. No need for oil. Cook them over high heat. In a short time, the gravy should be slightly bubbly.

Try to pick out chunks of bones. They are quite visible, you just need to scoop them off by using a ladle or spatula. It is okay not to, because the bones are cooked using high pressure cooker, they are soft and edible.

When the liquid has decreased slightly, toss in carrots.

And the cabbage.

Also bean sprouts.

Stir fry quickly and mix them well.

Add the vermicelli into the wok.

Season with soy sauce.

Cook for a bit longer, just to get all the ingredients mixed really, really well.

Ready! Serve warm with other dishes. Or just by itself.


Vermicelli with Pork Leg and Mushroom Stir Fry

Makes 4-6 servings


1 can Chinese Pork Leg with Mushroom (397 g)
80 g carrot, grated
100 g cabbage, sliced thinly
80 g bean sprouts, tail removed
350 g dried vermicelli, soaked
2 tsp soy sauce


Stir fry pork with gravy in a hot wok. Cook for 2 minutes over high heat.
Remove bone pieces from the wok.
Toss in grated carrot, cabbage and bean sprouts. Stir-fry everything for 2 minutes until mixed well.
Add vermicelli and season with soy sauce.
Stir fry by continually scraping the bottom of the wok to release noodles that sticks at the bottom.
Cook for another 2 minutes.
Remove from wok and serve warm with some chili sauce.

| More |

22 Responses to “Vermicelli with Pork Leg and Mushroom Stir Fry”

  1. 1

    Prerna@IndianSimmer — January 21, 2011 @ 4:29 pm

    My goodness! This looks so good I wish I could eat pork :-(
    Great recipe. Will try to make a veg. version of it maybe with tofu?!

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:07 pm

      Yeah definitely can make it yourself. It is basically pork and mushroom with lots of soy sauce-based gravy. Tofu and mushroom with soy sauce gravy sounds yum.

  2. 2

    Dinewithleny — January 21, 2011 @ 9:55 pm

    I love this vermicilli. My mom used to cook it a lot for breakfast….. I think most moms from medan share recipes that’s why we cook the same food at home…ahhaha…

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:07 pm

      I start to think that way too!

  3. 3

    Dinewithleny — January 22, 2011 @ 4:16 pm

    Hi Jun, thanks for dropping by. Yea I was from medan up until 1997 and now living in Melbourne. But parents are still in indonesia. I was so happy to find your blog. So excited to find all of my favourite medan chinese food recipes here. I love your recipes and photos. Reminds me of my mom’s cooking a lot. =)..I miss Medan. Im looking forward to go back and visit soon….

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:08 pm

      I am so happy to have found you too! It is amazing! Do look up for me when you are in town! We can have food-fest!

  4. 4

    tigerfish — January 23, 2011 @ 3:49 am

    I remember this dish which I used to have when I was a kid. Actually, my parents like them, so we had the chance to taste it. However, we don’t encourage them to eat pork leg anymore due to health reasons, so it means I don’t get to eat it too :O

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:14 pm

      It is really not that good for your health, but for the sake of tradition, once a year is enough to relieve the childhood memories. It is delicious and addictive! :)

  5. 5

    pigpigscorner — January 23, 2011 @ 3:57 am

    haha yes, we love our canned food! So simple and they are so delicious! Great use of canned pork, looks amazing!

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:16 pm


  6. 6

    Arudhi@aboxofkitchen — January 23, 2011 @ 5:25 am

    I`m imagining sup kaki kambing because of this :D
    Btw Jun, I tried making your fish with garlic and ginger and that was GOOD! Made a post on it with your name everywhere :) Thanks for the recipe!

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:27 pm

      I know!! I saw it! I think it was brilliant to use the leftover sesame oil for sambal. Cool! Thank you so much for the linky link :)

  7. 7

    Kimberley — January 23, 2011 @ 3:28 pm

    I don’t know if I could do pork from a can, but I could certainly do fresh pork with this lovely recipe! I’ve been craving porky noodle-y dishes lately.

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:34 pm

      LOL I was sure I was gonna get response from a lot of people who think it is quite weird that we Chinese enjoy this kind of food. Pre-cook the pork belly with mushrooms and soy sauce, add a lot of water, and some cornstarch. That’s basically what the can stuff is. :)

  8. 8

    Gertrude — January 23, 2011 @ 7:31 pm

    I was just talking to my niece about this can pork this morning and now I see your posting. I don’t see them selling it here at the Asian Store. My Mom used to keep a few cans of this and the Ma Ling Luncheon meat in the pantry for emergency (when she ran out of ideas of what to cook for us). She used to cook it this way too and sometime stew in Napa Cabbage. I really miss dish can food. The last shot of your picture is killing me :)

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:44 pm

      I am also a fans of Ma Ling. I keep thinking about it, but I only have it once or twice a year. Too much of a good thing is not a good thing! I am sure the pork leg in can won’t be able to pass through FDA requirement for “edible” food. LOL

  9. 9

    Tuty — January 23, 2011 @ 10:28 pm

    OMG… I almost forgot about that canned pork leg. It’s delicious and I used to just eat them with steamed rice. Unfortunately, such product isn’t available here… and US custom certainly won’t permit anyone trying to bring in the canned pork leg :(

    Great idea with the vermicelli. Must be yummy!

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:46 pm

      That was just the same thing I was telling Gertrude of MyKitchenSnippets! Make your own pork leg with mushroom, Tuty! :)

  10. 10

    Sabrina — January 24, 2011 @ 1:35 am

    Jun, I love this and do have a can left in my pantry. Whenever I’m back on holiday in Singapore, I always bring back a few cans with me. Today I will make this but I put in very finely cut french beans, also very delicious.

    • Jun replied: — January 24th, 2011 @ 10:47 pm

      Thank you for your comment, Sabrina. French beans, it would be lovely and bring the colors out! Great tips.

  11. 11

    mulberrytea — February 28, 2011 @ 10:27 pm

    Wow, that looks really easy and delicious! I can’t wait to go to the Chinese store to see what kinds of canned meat are available. I bet it would be good with the canned gluten, mushrooms, and bamboo shoots that I’ve seen. Yum!

  12. 12

    jane — July 4, 2014 @ 11:33 am

    Do you know where I can buy the pork leg in can online? I can’t find anything here in Canada.

Leave a Comment