Hokkien 5-Spiced Meat Parcels — Whip It UP!

Hokkien 5-Spiced Meat Parcels. Photos: Jill Chua

By Jill Chua

Warm-hearted memories are encased in these moist morsels of meat delicately seasoned with Chinese 5-spice powder in this heirloom recipe Jill Chua inherited from her beloved late grandma.

Total time: 2.5 hours
Difficulty: 2/5
Cost: < $6o
Serves: 12-15 persons 

A: Meat Filling

2kg pork belly, cleaned, patted dry and hand-minced
1kg shelled prawns, shelled, gutted, patted dry and hand-minced
500g water chestnuts, peeled and cut into small cubes
4 large eggs, beaten
100g spring onions, washed, dried and julienned
3 teaspoons 5-spice powder
3 teaspoons freshly ground white pepper
6-7 tablespoons premium soy sauce
2 tablespoon plain flour
A pinch of sea salt

2 large beancurd sheets, wiped with a damp kitchen cloth


B: Egg Wash

1 egg, lightly beaten


C: To Deep-fry

6-7 cups coconut oil



1.  In a large mixing bowl, combine A ingredients except beancurd sheets. Mix well. Cover with cling wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

2. Using a slotted spoon, spread 3 tablespoons of meat filling onto each beancurd sheet. Make them into squarish parcels – this speeds up the assembly process.

3. Fold up tightly to get compact parcels and squeeze out air bubbles, if any.  Repeat until all the meat is used up.

4. Cut each parcel into 4-cm squares.  Place assembled meat parcels or meat rolls on a steaming tray.

5. Fill a wok with water up to the steaming rack. Bring it to a rolling boil. Steam parcels for 10 minutes until cooked. Remove from heat and let cooked parcels cool down at room temperature.

6. Heat up oil in a wok over medium heat. Deep-fry a few parcels at a time till crisp and golden brown. Avoid overcrowding the pan with too many pieces as it slows down the cooking process.

7. Serve immediately.

TIP: For juicy moist meat parcels, a mix of 70-75% lean meat balanced with 25-30% fat is ideal. Hand-mincing ensures more bite as opposed to mincing in a food processor. As beancurd sheets are usually salted, adjust seasoning by reducing soy sauce in the recipe.

Jill Chua is an avid home-baker and home-cook, since the age of 9.


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