It’s Pork Belly time! But don’t forget that besides racist, murderous cops “protecting” our streets, there’s still a pandemic raging. Protest the former, and avoid the latter. And remember: your best weapon against killer cops is a phone camera.
According to online sources, char siu is a Cantonese method of barbecuing meat, usually pork. In Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia, char siu rice is popular, and something that I plan on making sometime.
This is a good, if not minorly unclear recipe, for char siu pork belly that I found on a site called Little Kitchen Big World. The unclear part comes from ambiguity in whether the 5-spice mix (that you make for the recipe) actually gets added to the liquid mixture or not. I had added it, and I don’t think that’s what the author intended.
I ended up looking up other recipes, and they do NOT call for adding extra 5-spice powder. Regardless, it did turn out delicious, but I think the recipe will turn out differently without the extra powder—it would have more sauce left over, instead of being absorbed by the spice powder.
No matter what, it’s worth the time and effort to make this, as it’s almost impossible to go wrong with any kind of pork belly.
Don’t forget that besides racist, murderous cops out on our streets, there’s still a pandemic raging. Protest the former, and avoid the latter.
What you’ll need:
- 1 lb. pork belly, skin removed
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1t whole cloves
- 1t fennel seeds
- 1t Sichuan peppercorns
- 2 star anise
- 2T vegetable oil
- 2t chopped garlic
- 2t dark soy sauce
- 1t salt—I didn’t use any because soy sauce and hoisin sauce provide a lot of salt
- 1t tsp baking soda
- 2T hoisin sauce
- 1T sriracha sauce
- 2T honey
- 2T brown sugar
- 1t rice vinegar
- splash of liquid smoke (optional)
What to do:
Make the five-spice powder by grinding the cinnamon, cloves, fennel, peppercorns and star anise with a spice grinder. If you’re feeling lazy, you could just buy it from the store.
Cut the pork belly into strips and sprinkle about 2t of five-spice powder over the strips.
Heat 2T vegetable oil in a frypan or wok over medium high heat and brown each side of the pork belly. While it is browning, mix the remaining ingredients in a bowl and pour over the pork belly after it’s browned—this is where the lack of clarity comes in. Is the reserved five-spice powder included with the “remaining ingredients”? Before making it, I would say “yes.” But having made it, that would be a “no.”
Continue cooking the pork belly and sauce over low heat until the sauce begins to reduce and get sticky. Ensure it’s cooked through before moving to the next step.
Reserve the sauce in bowl, leaving 1T of it in the cooking vessel. Continue to cook the pork belly until it chars a bit on each side. How much of a char is up to you.
Remove the pork belly from the wok and cut into cubes.
Serve with the remaining sauce on the side. Or use it to make char siu rice!