Sunday, November 13, 2016

Braised Pork (thịt kho tàu) (as interpreted by a Chinese Cook) (REVISED)

My wife really loves it when her mother cooks thịt kho tàu, a Vietnamese braised pork dish, for her.  It always brings her back to her childhood.  I will likely never be able to replicate her mother's recipe, but this version of the dish gets her thumbs up.

Servings: 5-6

* 2 lbs pork shoulder (trimmed) cut into 1-1/2 in. cubes
* 1/2 yellow onion cut into large pieces length-wise
* 4 cloves of garlic, smashed
* 5 hard boiled eggs, peeled
* 2 tbsp dark soy sauce
* 4 tbsp fish sauce
* 11 oz coconut water
* 1/2 bar Chinese brown sugar (can substitute with 2.5 tbsp granulated sugar)
* Black pepper
* 1 small Thai chili pepper cut into small rings (optional if you want to spice up the dish)

Step 1 - Blanch the Pork

  1. In a large stock pot,  add pork and enough water to fully submerge the pork.
  2. Heat pot until water is just boiling.
  3. Remove pot from heat.
  4. Carefully strain and rinse pork in cold water to remove scum.
  5. Rinse pot to remove any remaining scum.
Step 2 - Braise the Pork
  1. Add pork, coconut water, fish sauce, brown sugar, garlic, onion, and dark soy sauce to pot (optionally: Thai chili pepper)
  2. Add cold water to the pot until pork is just fully submerged.
  3. Bring to boil.
  4. Cover and reduce heat to low.  Simmer for 1-1/2 hours until pork is fork tender.
  5. About 30 minutes before the pork is done, add the hard boiled eggs to the pork and continue cooking.
  6. Season with black pepper to taste.

Serve hot over rice.

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