Steamed Pork Belly w/ Preserved Mustard Leaves
INGREDIENTS FOR THE SAUCE
INGREDIENTS TO SIMMER THE PORK
INGREDIENTS FOR MEI GAN CAI
- 115 g 4 oz of Mei Gan Cai (soak with water 30 minutes in advance)
- 2 tbsp of cooking oil
- 1 tsp of diced ginger
- 1 tbsp of minced garlic
- 1 piece of star anise
- 1 piece of cinnamon stick
- 1 piece of dried orange peel
- The leftover seasoning from the pork
- 2 to 3 tsp of dark soy sauce to apply on the surface of the pork
- 1/4 cup of oil to deep fry the pork
- 1 tsp of cornstarch + 2 tsp of water to thicken the sauce at the end
- Blanched baby bok choy
- Diced scallion
- In a big pot, add the following ingredients: Pork belly, 4 slices of ginger slices, 2 cloves of skin on but lightly crush garlic, 2 pieces of star anise, 1 stick of cinnamon, 1 piece of dried orange peel, 2 pieces of scallion, and 3 tbsp of Chinese cooking wine. Pour in 2 liters of water to cover the pork. Bring this to a boil. Then turn the heat to low. Let it simmer for 25 minutes.
- Once it is done, take it out. Quickly use a fork to poke as many holes on the skin as possible. Wipe the moisture with a paper towel. Apply some dark soy sauce on the surface.
- Get a pair of chopsticks. Put it under the pork. Let it sit until the surface is fairly dry. If you have a fan in your house, just put the meat under it. It will take about 20 minutes.
- Make the sauce. In a small bowl, combine the following ingredients: 2.5 tbsp of soy sauce, 1 tbsp of oyster sauce, 1 tsp of sugar, 1 tsp of thirteen spice powder, 1 piece of Chinese fermented Tofu, 1 tbsp of Chinese cooking wine, a big drizzle of sesame oil, and 2 tsp of dark soy sauce. Mix everything until well combined. Set it aside.
- Add 1/4 cup of oil to the wok. Heat it to 380 F. Put the pork in, skin side down. Move it around for a few seconds so the skin doesn’t stick to the bottom. When the oil just starts splashing, cover the lid immediately. Be very careful here because it hurts a lot if the oil gets on you. Keep the heat at medium-low all time. Each side needs a couple of minutes.
- Take the pork out. Soak it in the broth that we cooked the pork with for 40 minutes.
- The skin is full of gelatin. It can absorb a lot of water. 40 minutes later, it will have a wrinkly look. Slice the pork into 1/4 of an inch thick pieces. Marinade the pork slices with the sauce that we made before. Use a brush to make sure the seasoning gets in between each piece of the meat so the flavor is well distributed.
- Place the pork slices into a bowl. Skin side down toward the bottom. Later on, when we flip, it will have a nice presentation. By now, all the preparation for the pork is done. Set it aside.
- Let’s prepare the Mei Gan Cai - preserved mustard leaves. Soak t with room temperature water for 30-40 minutes. Don’t soak it too long or else you will lose some of the unique aromas. Drain and squeeze out all the water.
- Add a couple of tbsp of oil to the wok. Along with some minced garlic, ginger and a few spices - Cinnamon stick, star anise, and dry orange peel. Stir this for a minute. Then toss in the drained Mei Gan Cai.
- Rinse the leftover sauce from the pork with 1/3 cup of broth. Pour it into the wok. Let the Mei Gan Cai cook with that delicious broth and seasonings. Give it a final taste to adjust the saltiness. Mix well. Take this out and put it on top of the pork. Pack it tight.
- Bring the water to a boil. Put the pork onto the steamer rack. We will steam this on medium-low heat for 1.5 hours.
- Take it off the steamer rack. There will be lots of liquid in the bowl. Pour it out carefully. Thicken it with some cornstarch water. It is going to be a light gravy to go with the Kou Rou.
- Cover the dish bowl with another plate or container and flip it over. Blanch some baby bok choy. Put it around the side. Pour the gravy on the top. Last, sprinkle some diced green onion for a little extra garnish.