There’s soya chicken and there’s soya pork. Both are cooked with a generous amount of soy sauce but the cooking method differs. While the chicken cooks, for the most part, in the residual heat of the sauce, the pork is braised until tender because the fibers of the pork meat will not break down to tenderness in the residual heat alone.
Does that mean cooking soya pork is a more involved procedure? No, not at all. You just allow the meat to braise. In fact, my version of soya pork requires less preparation and even less ingredients. All you need is the meat, soy sauce, rice wine and aromatics. Then, exercise patience because the meat requires long and slow cooking. The wonderful aroma that will float around the kitchen might whet your appetite so much and tempt you to lift the pork from the sauce before it’s ready but you have to resist the temptation because the meat requires time to soak up the complex flavors of the soy sauce.
Soy (soya) pork
- 2 tablespoons cooking oil
- 1 whole slab pork belly or shoulder about a kilo
- 1/4 cup dark soy sauce
- 1/2 to 3/4 cups light soy sauce
- 1/4 cup rice wine
- 1 to 2 cups bone broth
- 6 cloves garlic , pounded
- 4 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon peppercorns
- hard boiled eggs , optional
- roughly chopped cilantro , to garnish
- Heat the cooking oil in a wok.
- Lower the pork in the hot oil and brown all sides.
- Pour in the dark soy sauce, 1/2 c. of light soy sauce and rice wine. Add the garlic, bay leaves, peppercorns and about a cup of broth.
- Bring to the boil, lower the heat, cover and simmer for an hour to an hour and a half or until the pork is tender. Check the liquid halfway through and add more broth, a quarter cup at a time, if needed.
- Scoop out the pork and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into two-inch cubes.
- Strain the sauce and reheat. Taste and add more light soy sauce, if needed.
- Add the pork cubes to the sauce. If you want eggs with your pork, now is the time to add them.
- Cook the pork (and eggs) in the sauce until the sauce reduces to no more than a couple of tablespoonfuls.
- Transfer the meat and sauce (and eggs) to a serving bowl. Sprinkle with cilantro (or scallions) and serve hot.