Crisp Chinese Roast Pork with Spicy Shrimp Broth

Crisp Chinese Roast Pork with spicy Shrimp Broth© Kevin Ashton 2005

This recipe of mine first appeared in my Sunday newspaper column in October, 2005.
Several weeks later I demonstrated the dish at BBC’s Good Food Show 2005 which held every year at the NEC in Birmingham. You can also find the recipe on the BBC Good Food site here.

Chinese food is not always about stir fried vegetables, in this recipe I have created a wonderful contrast between the crispy yet succulent pork belly and the spicy shrimp. This dish was based on a favourite Rick Stein method for cooking belly of pork.

Ingredients for 4 portions

1-kilo belly of pork

1 pack of straight to the wok noodles

2 teaspoon five spice

1-teaspoon black mustard seeds

1-teaspoon Szechwan peppers

1 teaspoon black peppercorns

1-teaspoon caster sugar

100 grams shitake mushroom

100 grams pak choy, sliced lengthwise

50 grams trimmed sugar snap peas

3 cloves garlic chopped

20 grams ginger finely chopped

1/2 large red pepper sliced thinly

1 liter chicken stock

2 Tbsp oyster sauce.

20 raw tiger shrimp (shelled and deveined)

1 Tbsp vegetable oil

1/2 red chili deseeded, finely diced

  1. Spike the skin of the pork belly well with a metal skewer, then pour a kettle of boiling water over it.  Leave it to drain and then dry well with paper towels.
  2. Using a pestle & mortar grind up the Szechwan, black peppers, mustard seeds until the mix is fine then add the five spice and sugar.  Turn the pork belly meat side up and rub the dry spice mix in well into the meat.
  3. Preheat oven to 200 C (gas mark 6), then place the pork belly on a wire rack skin side up and sit that over a roasting tray half filled with cold water.
  4. Place in the middle of the oven for 15 minutes; turn the heat down to 180 C (gas mark 4) and cook for a further 2 hours.
  5. Cut off the stalks from the shitake mushrooms and put them into a stainless steel saucepan together the chicken stock, oyster sauce. Simmer on a medium high heat until you have 500 ml left, then remove from the heat and cover. Slice the shitake mushrooms and reserve.
  6. After the belly has cook for about 1-½ hours.  Strain the shitake storks from the chicken stock and bring it to a low simmer, then add the shitake slices, red pepper, pak-choy, red chilli and sugar-snap peas… then turn off the heat.
  7. In a hot wok quickly add the oil then stir fry the garlic and ginger for I minute, stirring constantly.  Now add the shrimp and cook on a high heat for 4 minutes, then remove from the heat.
  8. Increase the temperature of the oven to 220 C (gas mark 8) and roast the pork belly for a further 15 minutes. Turn the oven off and keep the door slightly ajar.
  9. Check that the vegetables in the stock are cooked enough, and that the broth is spicy enough before adding the noodles and bringing back to a simmer. Finally add the shrimp and remove the stock from the heat.  Divide the shrimp broth between 4 bowls, then cut up the pork belly into bite-sized squares and place a few pieces on top of each bowl.

Chef’s Tips

You can marinade the pork belly for longer before roasting it you wish.

Make sure you have a good sharp knife handy to cut up the pork, if you do have difficulty then try turning the pork upside down so that the knife goes through the meat then the crackling.  © Kevin Ashton 2005

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