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Shanghai-style Braised Pork

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Prep Time 20 minutes
Cook Time 3 hours
Total Time 3 hours 20 minutes
Course Main Dish
Cuisine Asian, Chinese
Servings 4 servings
Calories 546 kcal



  • 2 kg pork blade bone with rind
  • 1 small orange
  • 2 whole star anise
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 1 tbsp cumin seeds
  • 3 dried red chillies
  • 8 bok choi or Chinese leaves
  • plain boiled rice to serve

For the braising liquid

  • 600 ml Shaoxing rice wine or dry sherry
  • 1.2 l homemade chicken stock or good quality store bough
  • 300 ml dark soy sauce
  • 50 ml light soy sauce
  • 175 g Chinese rock sugar or granulated sugar
  • 8 slices fresh root ginger
  • 6 garlic cloves crushed
  • 6 whole spring onions
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black peppercorn


  • Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add the pork. Return to the boil, skim, reduce the heat and simmer gently, partially covered, for 30 minutes. Drain thoroughly.
  • Using a potato peeler, remove 8 strips of zest from the orange. Put the star anise, cinnamon sticks, cumin seeds, dried chillies and orange zest in a piece of muslin and tie together tightly.
  • Make the braising liquid by combining all the ingredients in a very large pot and bringing the liquid to a simmer. Add the bag of spices and the blanched pork, and bring back to a simmer, partially covered, skimming all the while.
  • Cover the pot tightly and continue to simmer gently for 3 hours, until the pork fat and rind are very soft and tender. You can do this up to a day ahead, let the pork cool in the liquid, chill overnight, then reheat gently in the liquid before serving.
  • Cut the bok choi in halves or quarters depending on their size, or the Chinese leaves into 5cm/2in pieces. When the pork is done, remove it from the liquid. Remove the skin and cut the meat into small pieces. Add the bok choi to the pot and cook over high heat until it is very tender about 3 minutes. Remove the bok choi from the cooking liquid and place on a warm dish. Arrange the pork on top.
  • Skim off all the fat from the braising liquid and boil it to reduce it by about half. Pour some over the meat to moisten it and serve the rest separately. (You will probably have a lot leftover.) Serve with rice.


Recipe from Good Food magazine, February 2003


Calories: 546kcalCarbohydrates: 44gProtein: 48gFat: 9gSaturated Fat: 3gSugar: 32g
Keyword Pork
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