Hong shou rou (Braised pork belly)

This is a recipe on how to cook Hong shou rou (Braised pork belly at home). It is a classic Chinese dish typically from Shanghai but it has been made well-known all over the world. While eating pork belly isn’t that good for you but it tastes so good. Every now and it’s ok. To make this recipe a success one needs to source a good cut of pork belly with skin on. As the layers of fat are sandwiched in the meat, tendons create this unique taste. It is possible to use a simple cut of pork belly the result wouldn’t be so good. The key is to use pork belly with skin on. As the skin creates a unique gelatinous texture.

I cooked this recipe in a clay pot as it calls for a slow cooking process. Otherwise, if there is none available just use an ordinary cooking pot.

This recipe is good to serve with steamed rice and stir-fried vegetables. Here is a link to cooking rice with a rice cooker.

Recipe for Hong shou rou (Braised pork belly)

500 grams of pork belly

4 tbsp dark soy sauce

1-2 tbsp grated ginger

1-star anise

1 cinnamon stick

1/2 tsp five-spice powder

3 tbsp dry sherry

1 tsp caster sugar


Cut the piece of pork belly into 3 cm cubes. Measure out and pour the dark soy sauce and the rest of the ingredients into the clay pot. All except the dry sherry and caster sugar. Arrange the pork belly cubes skin side down on top of the sauce. Cover it with the sauce.

Start heating up the clay pot in slow heat. Then let boil to a slow simmer. Cook it for about 30 minutes till the pork belly is cooked. Then turn it around. Don’t let the liquid dry out or burn. Add the dry sherry and sugar. Simmer for another 45 minutes or longer till the pork belly is nice and soft.

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