Braised Sweet and Savoury Pork Belly In Soy Sauce
By Ida Soh
This classic Chinese pork dish is simple to cook yet rich in depth and flavours from braising in soy sauce with brown sugar. A simplified version of Hong Shao Rou or Shanghai-style Braised Pork Belly, it’s sweet and savoury all in one bite. On busy days, pressure cook the meat for melt-in-the-mouth tenderness. This recipe has been tweaked to appease Ida’s hungry and vocal teenager; hence the nickname “Shut The Pork Up”.
Total Time: 1½ hours
Serves: 4 persons
A: To Parboil Pork
500g slab of pork belly with rind
2 stalks spring onions, white stems only
1 thumb-sized piece ginger, peeled and sliced
2 tablespoons Shao Xing (Chinese rice wine), cooking sake or dry sherry
Pinch of salt
B: Braising Sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
¾ cup water
C: Cornflour Slurry
1½ teaspoons cornflour
1 tablespoon water
- In a medium saucepan or wok, place ingredients A and fill just enough water to cover pork.
2. Bring everything to a boil then lower heat to medium and simmer for 20 minutes.
3. Remove pork belly when cooked. Rinse under clean running water, then slice into generous chunks.
4. Turn pressure cooker on Sauté or Bake mode. Add ingredients B. Let it come to a boil, then add pork. Stir to coat pork with sauce.
5. Close the lid. Cancel Sauté mode and switch to Manual or Beef mode. Pressure cook for 30 minutes with pressure valve set at seal position.
6. Turn off pressure cooker after 30 minutes. Allow pressure to release naturally – this is the depressurising process.
7. After depressurising, open lid. Press Sauté mode and boil pork for 3-5 minutes. In a small bowl, blend cornflour and water together then stir it into the pork. Allow gravy to thicken until it becomes a glaze – this adds a sheen to the pork.
8. Serve pork with preferred greens and piping hot steamed rice and a fried egg for a protein boost if preferred. Garnish with cut spring onions and red cut chilli.
TIP: When using pressure cooker, always do a full natural release to keep meat juicy and succulent.
TECHNIQUE: Blanching gets rid of impurities and any “porky” odours.
Photos: Ida Soh
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