Got pork belly on sale, thought of making roast pork but at the last minutes change my mind to make tau yu bak: braised pork belly in dark flavourful sauce. It is one of the many dishes that my grandma had prepared which I have missed so much. The meat was always tender and juicy.
As usual grandma don’t have the proper measurement. Therefore, I am doing it through trial and error till I get it right. Grandma cook her tau yu bak always with hard boiled eggs, shiitake mushroom and tofu pok (puff fried tofu). As I didn’t have eggs, shiitake mushrooms and tofu pok. I have added Brussel sprouts.
In addition to it I have made Hainanese chicken rice from Tean’s Gourmet Hainanese Chicken Rice Paste, 200g packet. Follow the instruction on the back. I admitted that it’s not as flavourful as my mother’s Hainanese chicken rice. I am pleased that the tau yu bak turned out delicious, comforting and creative. Let’s cook!!!!
500 g pork belly, cut into bite size
6-8 Brussel sprouts, cut into half, stem removed
4 whole garlic pods with skin on, smash lightly with chopper
1 star anise
1 cinnamon stick
4 cloves (OPT)
1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
2 tbsp light soy sauce
1 tbsp dark brown sugar
2 Tbsp shao Xing wine
1/2 Tbs kicap manis (caramel dark soy)
1 Tbs light soy sauce
1/4 Tsp Chinese five spice powder
1 Tbs oyster sauce
1/2 Tsp dark soy sauce
1/2 Tsp pepper
1/2 Tsp salt
2 Tbs dark brown sugar
3 Tbs chopped finely ginger
Blanch them in boiling water for a few mins until the scum floats to the top. Remove pork belly and rinse under running water to remove any excess scum and stop the cooking process. Marinade pork for 1-2 hours, put in fridge cover with cling wrap.
Heat clay pot on medium heat with 2 Tbs oil. Add star anise and cinnamon stick in a hot frying pan and fry lightly until fragrant. Then add marinated pork and cook, turning frequently, until browned all over about 5 minutes. Add in garlic pods, and cloves and cook until garlic is fragrant about 2 minutes.
Add 750ml water followed by pepper, dark soy sauce, soy sauce, kicap manis, Shao Xing wine and sugar, mix well. Bring to the boil then reduce heat to low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until tender and cooked for about 1- 1 1/2 hours till pork belly is tender. Add a little extra water during cooking if needed.
Meantime, cook the Hainanese rice follow the instruction in rice cooker. Put Brussel sprout in microwave safe bowl, microwave for about 5-7 minutes. Drain and add into claypot when pork belly becomes tender, and braising liquid reduced by half, the gravy is thick for about 3-4 minutes. Switch off the flame and let it rest for about 35 minutes for the flavour to infuse into the Brussel sprouts.
I removed star anise, garlic pods and cinnamon stick before serving Brussel sprouts tau yu bak with Hainanese chicken rice and garnish with garlic chili sauce leftovers from the Hainanese chicken rice my sister bought for me. Enjoy!!!!