I decided to serve the slices of pork belly with steamed Chinese buns. I also added thin slices of cucumber and green spring onions. The buns were bought from a local supermarket and I steamed them first before adding the pork slices in-between each bun. This particular dish is now very popular in Chinese restaurants and you can also find food kiosks at local shopping malls selling them as well.
Five Spice Braised Pork Belly
Recipe adapted from Chez Pim
Serves 5 - 6
1.5 kg of pork belly with skin on (If you can find the belly with the rib bones attached, use it (rinse well and pat dry)
2" long knob of ginger, peeled, sliced thinlyand but into thin slices, lengthwise
1 1/2 Tbsp Five Spice powder
3 cloves of garlic, smashed
2 Tbsp cooking oil
2 Tbsp dark soy sauce (You can substitute 2 Tbsp regular soy sauce plus 1/2 tbsp brown sugar)
3 Tbsp soy sauce (plus more to taste)
1 piece of cinnamon stick, 2" in length
3 star anise
A small bunch of cilantro leaves for garnish.
1) Use a large dutch oven or heavy pot big enough to lay the pork belly insside.
2) Heat up the oil, then add the ginger and garlic. Then add the five spice powder and other spices. Cook for about 2 minutes until fragrant.
3) Then add the pork, skin side down over the garlic and spices.Add enough water to completely cover the belly and a bit more. Add the dark and light soy sauce.
4) Put the lid on the pot and turn the heat up to high and bring the pot to a boil. Skim any foamy scum from the top. Then, open the lid slightly, and let simmer over low heat for at least 3 hours (skim occasionally) or until the pork is falling off the bone tender.
5) Once the belly is ready, remove it from the pot. Then reduce the sauceto a thick, caramel like consistency.
6) To serve, warm back the pork belly. Slice it thinly and lay on a plate. Drizzle the gravy and garnish with sprigs of cilantro. Alternatively you can serve the pork belly slices with steamed Chinese buns.