five spiced braised pork belly (五香鲁肉), sweet sour and spicy napa cabbage (糖醋白菜)

These two dishes have been on my to-cook list for a while. I was a bit intimidated by the amount of time required to braise the pork belly and hence never really seriously got to it. As I re-read some of the recipes I have in my favourites folder, I came across a few on this dish and decided to finally give it a go by combining the best three recipes I sourced.

Ingredients for the five spiced braised pork belly (五香鲁肉):
- 800g of pork belly with the skin on and lots of fatty bits
- 6 eggs (optional)
- a few pieces of dried beancurd (豆干 - tau kwa) (optional)
- 3 tbsp five spiced powder
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 3 tbsp dark soy sauce
- 3 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 large onion, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
- a knob of ginger about 2 inches long, thinly slice half of it and chop the rest finely

Ingredients for the sweet sour and spicy Napa cabbage (糖醋白菜):
- a whole Napa cabbage
- a handful of dried chilli
- 5 tsp white wine vinegar
- 1.5 tsp light soy sauce
- 1 tsp chinese rice wine
- 4.5 tsp sugar
- 2 tbsp cooking oil
- 2 tbsp finely chopped ginger
- a pinch of salt

First I prepared all the ingredients required for the pork belly (and laid them out nicely to take photos LOL).

Heat the cooking oil in a deep frying pan over medium heat. Make sure the pan is big enough to lay the whole strip of pork belly in. Add the diced onions to stir fry until translucent. Then add the chopped ginger and five spiced powder and stir fry until fragrant. This takes only a few minutes.

Lay the pork belly flat in the pan over the spices. Flip it over after a minute. After another minute, add enough water to cover the pork belly and throw in the garlic and sliced ginger. Add the dark soy sauce and fish sauce and bring it to the boil.

(Optional) While waiting for the above to boil, I threw several eggs into a separate pot to let it boil for about 8 minutes. De-shell the hardboiled eggs when ready and stand by for adding to the pork.

(Optional) Wash and cut the dried beancurd and stand by for adding to the pork.

Let the contents in the deep pan boil for a few minutes on high then transfer the whole pot into a slow cooker. Add in the hardboiled eggs and dried beancurd (optional). Let it simmer in the slow cooker for at least six to eight hours, or until the pork is soft enough for your taste. I did not have so much time to spare and so I did without the slow cooker but let it simmer on low heat in the deep pan for about three hours.

While the pork is being braised, prepare the Napa cabbage and the ingredients required for the dish. In a small bowl, combine the vinegar, rice wine, soy sauce and sugar and stir until they are thoroughly mixed together and then set aside. The actual cooking of this dish only takes about five minutes so stand by all the ingredients and only start cooking it when the pork is ready to be served.

When the pork is soft enough to your taste, most of the liquid should have boiled off, leaving the pan looking something like this.

It's now time to cook the cabbage. Heat the oil in a frying pan and add the chopped ginger when hot. Stir fry until fragrant. Add the cabbage and dried chilli and stir fry until the cabbage is soft but still crisp. Add a pinch of salt. Give the prepared sauce a quick stir and swirl it into the pan. Stir fry to mix everything together. Ready to serve.

Remove the pork belly from the pan and slice into pieces.

Serve with the eggs and dried beancurd and drizzle the braised liquid over them to serve.

I had the above with rice. The pork is moist and soft, the fatty bits sweet and juicy, the cabbage tangy and slightly spicy. Very yummy. ^^v


Sunshine23 said...

Angel chef! I so wanna eat!! Damn pro wor u!

o8ight said...


why didn't u cook such gourmet food while i was your housemate?!?!

Beh Kee

monkeycrab said...

Angel: I can cook for you when I'm back in SG!

Beh Kee: errr.... I got cook chilli crabs for you ah... even though it was from instant pack but still nice haha... I guess I am more stressed these days so I need to cookcookcook to destress...

o8ight said...

call me, call me along!
i offer to bring the mantou for the soulfood fatty meat! hurhur

Beh Kee

monkeycrab said...

Maybe u can contribute lor mai gai