Making Roasted Pork Belly or Char Siew at home

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Close-up of the beautiful Pork Belly I made. Glistening. Totally sexy.

Making my own roasted pork belly or char siew seemed rather strange, somehow. Mostly because 99% of the time, my family would get our char siew from the butcher or grocer or hawker. Therefore, I considered it  a pseudo-specialty food, in the same catergory as Chinese sausages or lap chuong and Singaporean pork jerky or Bak Kwa.
Until I chanced upon
this recipe from David Chang's (Momofuku fame), I had no idea it could be that simple. I didn't make the buns because I was too lazy + it's good on noodles and rice anyways. I adapted the recipe, choosing to brine the pork and make a separate glaze for the roasting process.

Adapted ingredient list and brief instructions to follow:

 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup sugar4 1/2 cups water, divided2 1/2 lb skinless boneless pork belly, cut into quarters1/2 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
-Combine all ingredients and brine in the fridge for 24 hours.
2½ tbsp Hoisin sauce
1 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp soy sauce
1 tbsp dark soya sauce
1/4 -1/2 cup sugar/honey *important for caramelizing
1 tb cooking wine
1/2 tsp 5 spice powder
salt and pepper
-Remember to make it as dry of a paste as you can (see pic below) because the pork will produce copious amounts of oil which will dilute the glaze sufficiently.

Pat pork belly dry

Glaze on each side
Cover with aluminium foil and roast at 300 degF for 45 minutes, then increase to 450 degF for 30 minutes. taking care to turn in between. Once done, cool to room temperature. 
The pork needs to rest and chill before cutting.  WOOOW!
Check out the meat juices!
I filtered the resultant golden liquid lard into a shot glass......for use with later pad see ew!!! or any other noodle stir fry! 
Thoughts. Experiment and tweaking of recipes worked better than expected. The pork was tender and flavorful and the glaze had a touch of sweetness without it being cloying.  :)


Chartay said...

looks sooo delicious!! i want some!! :P

Winnie said...

You could get it easily anywhere in Sg!

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