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The Hirshon Chinese Bacon - 臘肉

The Hirshon Chinese Bacon – 臘肉


  • Total Time: 0 hours

Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1/2” piece of ginger, peeled, lightly smashed and cut into 3 slices (Jiāng)
  • 2 cloves Garlic, sliced thin (Dàsuàn)
  • 4 bay leaves (Xiāng Yè)
  • 2 star anise (Bājiǎo)
  • 2 cinnamon sticks (Guìpí)
  • 1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns (Huājiāo)
  • 1/3 cup dark soy sauce (Lǎo Chōu – 老抽)
  • 1/2 cup light soy sauce (Shēng Chōu – 生抽)
  • 1 cup Shaoxing wine (料酒)
  • 3/4 cup crushed pieces of yellow rock sugar (冰糖)
  • 3 1/2 lbs boneless pork belly (‘5-flower’ cut, no skin), cut into 1″ wide pieces – (Wǔhuāròu)
  • 3 tablespoons baijiu (白酒 – a Chinese liquor) or Chinese rose liquor (for a Cantonese touch that TFD prefers) – mei kuei lieu jiu (玫瑰露酒). If neither is available, a good whiskey will work
  • 3/4 tsp chicken stock powder (optional but strongly recommended)

Instructions

  1. In a small saucepan, add the ginger, garlic, bay leaves, star anise, cinnamon sticks, peppercorns, soy sauces, Shaoxing wine, chicken stock powder and sugar. Place the pot over medium heat, and bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring to dissolve the sugar. The process should only take a few minutes. Shut off the heat and allow to cool completely.
  2. While waiting for the sauce to cool, rinse the pork belly and pat dry thoroughly with paper towels. The pork should be as dry as possible. Arrange the pieces neatly in a shallow, rimmed dish.
  3. Once the sauce has completely cooled, stir in the baijiu, rose wine or whiskey. Pour the mixture over the pork, making sure the meat is completely submerged. You can put a clean plate or bowl on top to weight down the meat to be sure it stays submerged.
  4. Cover tightly and refrigerate for 3 full days, flipping the pork belly once each day to ensure the sauce penetrates the meat evenly.
  5. After 3 days, it’s time to hang the pork up to cure. Use kitchen string and a bamboo skewer to thread the string through the fat in the pork belly.
  6. Tie a knot to make a sturdy loop, and hang the pork belly in a cool dry place. You want the temperature to remain around 50-55 degrees F, and the relative humidity should be around 65%.
  7. Keep the window open during the day to let in fresh air, but make sure it is screened to keep out flies. Note: this cured pork belly is best made during the colder months!
  8. Layer some newspaper over some plastic on the floor to catch any liquid that drips from the pork, and let it dry for 4-6 days until the outer layer is completely dry and the inside is still slightly soft when pressed. To store, put in a freezer bag with as much air removed as possible. They can be frozen for up to 3 months.
  9. To prepare this pork belly in the most simple (and delicious) way, just add rice and water to your rice cooker as you normally would to cook a batch of white rice. Then just toss a piece of this cured pork belly on top, close the lid and press START.
  10. Once the rice is done steaming, your pork belly will also be heated through. Slice up your lap yuk and mix it with your rice!
  • Prep Time: 0 hours
  • Cook Time: 0 hours

Nutrition

  • Calories: 2316.29 kcal
  • Sugar: 38.21 g
  • Sodium: 2449.08 mg
  • Fat: 210.88 g
  • Saturated Fat: 76.78 g
  • Trans Fat: 0.0 g
  • Carbohydrates: 44.93 g
  • Fiber: 1.62 g
  • Protein: 42.16 g
  • Cholesterol: 285.78 mg
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