Lion's Head Casserole (Don't worry! No lion meat here!)


Lion’s Head Casserole is a simple dish of pork meatballs and napa cabbage. It is called Lion’s Head because, supposedly, the meatball looks like a lion's head and the cabbage looks like its mane. Do you see it?  It had been a while since I made it (pre-kids!), but I made it last night and wondered why it took me so long!

Now, I usually judge the success of a dish by whether Anna eats it or not. Well, with nagging, she ate a whole meatball. And lots of cabbage on her own, too. That, along with the simplicity of making the dish from start to finish, I am adding it to the dinner rotation.

Here is how I did it in 3 easy steps:
As with all my cooking lately, I didn’t use measuring spoons. Everything was approximate. For step-by-step recipes, just google "Lion's Head Recipe."

Step 1.  For the meatballs, I combined ground pork, egg, salt, soy sauce, oyster sauce, chopped scallion, minced garlic, and cornstarch in bowl. But really, you can add whatever you want to the meatballs. Tofu, bread crumbs, shredded carrots. Then I heated up oil in a pan, shaped the meat mixture into balls, and fried them until cooked. Set the meatballs aside.

Step 2. Using the same pan with all the meat drippings, I cooked the napa cabbage (rinsed and chopped) until soft and added a little bit of salt and oyster sauce.

Step 3. Then I transferred everything to a claypot. I dumped in the cabbage and placed the meatballs on top. Then I added chicken broth, a splash of sesame oil, and brought everything to a simmer. To thicken it all up, I stirred in some cornstarch/water.

Yum, home cooking is the best.


  1. Looks good. I was just thinking about cooking it myself the other day.

  2. Now I'm not sure what has changed since the last time Joyce whipped these up, but I honestly wasn't too excited when she announced her plans to make these the other day. Sure its been several years and a few kids later, but these meatballs were damn good. But why so many little balls? Can't we just have a giant one in the middle with ears and nose on it? ^.^ Now that would be a lion's head.


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