You will find many Chinese recipes using pork, but you may not find all of those recipes very easily in restaurants. So, if you want to cook Chinese pork dishes that you have never tried, then cooking a braised pork belly should be the best option for you. The soft streaks of fat with the tender meat simply melt in the mouth and the sweet and sour sauce tastes awesome when served with warm cooked rice.
Although the recipe requires quite a bit of time, it is definitely worth the wait. And the best thing about this recipe is that it is very easy and hassle-free. Just chop the scallions (spring onions), garlic and the ginger and you are ready to go.
Difficulty level: Easy
Servings per recipe: 2-3
Preparation time required: 1 hour
Cooking time required: 2-3 hours
2 stirring spoons
1 large wok
1 lb. of pork belly, with rind
3-4 slices of ginger
2 cups of shaoxing wine
2 star anise
2 teaspoons of salt
6 spring onions, chopped
1 cup of low-sodium chicken stock
1 cup of soy sauce
4 large cloves of garlic, smashed and roughly chopped
1 2-inch cinnamon stick
2-3 tablespoons of cooking oil
6 tablespoons of white granulated sugar
Method Of Cooking
1. Take the pork belly and place it on a plate. Sprinkle some salt on the pork belly and then massage it with your fingers over the pork. Turn the pork belly chunk and then season the other side as well with salt. Once done, set aside the pork belly and let it rest for one hour. While the pork is resting, take the spring onions and cut off their tips and roots. Then cut the spring onions into 3 long pieces. Then take the garlic cloves and smash them with the back of your knife. Peel off the skin from the cloves of garlic and then chop them roughly. Next, take the ginger and slice it into 6 thin slices.
2. Now take a wok or skillet and place it on high heat. While the wok is heating up, take the seasoned pork belly and rinse it with water. Pat-dry the pork with paper towels and then set aside. Once the wok starts steaming, add-in the oil and then the pork belly chunk. Sear the pork belly on both sides until it turns into a nice golden color. Once the pork belly is seared, add-in the chopped garlic, spring onions and the ginger slices.
3. Stir and cook the vegetables for 2 minutes and then add-in the shaoxing wine, cinnamon stick, cloves, chicken stock, star anise, sugar and the soy sauce. Stir the mixture to combine everything nicely and then bring the mixture to a boil. Boil the mixture for 10 minutes and then flip the meat to keep it skin side down. Lower down the flame to medium low and cook the meat for 5 minutes. Then flip the meat once again and cover the wok to braise the pork.
4. Flip the pork belly slab after every 30 minutes to flavor all the sides of the meat. Braise the pork for 2 ½-3 hours or until it turns very soft and the rind turns into a deep reddish color. Once done, your pork belly slab may break apart into 2 or 3 slices and that’s when you know that your pork is done. Finally, serve the braised pork belly over cooked rice and vegetables.