“Sous Vide” Char Siew

10312985_10152418374024494_4528200441245221669_n

sous vide char siew

as i mentioned in my recent post on a homecooked 11pax 11-course dinner for RI buddies on 5.5.2014, i always find chinese cooking to be much more challenging than western (re my “worthwhile to do?” philosophy). peking duck for example requires such fine & painstaking preparation as air-blowing the skin to produce a very crispy skin peking duck, and xiaolongbao (小笼包) & 石榴包 are such intricate dumplings c/w ravioli served in modern european fine dining. & while perhaps not quite fine dining, teochew braised duck, chicken rice chicken, 蒜泥白肉, char siew & roast pork are such simple, tasty & very cheap food one can buy anywhere in singapore that it is really challenging to make home-cooking such dishes “worthwhile to do?”. anyhow, i did have quite successful recipes for very cheap & easy to do teochew braised duck & chicken rice chicken, but am unable to make a good crackling belly pork thus far. char siew also was not easy, and i had made quite a few attempts. anyhow finally, i think i have developed a really good “sous vide” char siew recipe, that made for a truly fabulous dish. 🙂

10308340_10152371913009494_6823904526565620218_n

sous vide char siew

HEl5djPornAp4jd3kII25yuRRixiYUBdPxJxDlzvvQQ,EfS3a586u4LFj6lNISOIWJNDb5tufLuC4m-HovFahTk

sous vide char siew

i scalded the belly pork as usual to remove scum. then i cut into several 3in pieces & placed in a ziploc bag when cooled. i prepared a very good marinade after much scouring through internet recipes plus some adjustments of my own. this method is similar to my very good miso belly pork except that the marinade is an adapted char siew marinade & not miso. like miso belly pork, i let it marinate for 3 full days to infuse the wonderful flavours. then i placed the belly pork fully covered/drenched in a marinade bath in a pre-heated oven at 90degC for 5hrs. 90degC is the optimum temperature (fastest) for conversion of collagen the tough connective tissues to gelatine with excellent texture & flavours. 🙂 this made the char siew especially the fatty parts, totally tender & delicious, & melt-in-the-mouth, such wonderful texture & flavours combined. 🙂 the final step was just to char over a non-stick pan on high heat. i used butter (if you want higher temperatures, use vegetable oil). i then charred the char siew on all sides which took just minutes. that imparted even more intense flavours to the char siew. 🙂 c.h.e.f andy Ingredients:

  • 500g belly pork

char siew sauce

  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1 tsp dark sauce
  • 1 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 1 tbsp mirin
  • 1 tbsp cooking sake
  • 2 tbsp brandy (or 2 tbsp shaoxing wine)
  • 3 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 tbsp honey
  • 1 tbsp chopped garlic – 3 to 4 cloves
  • 1 tsp sesame oil
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • pinch of black pepper

Directions:

  1. scald belly pork as usual to remove scum. then cut into several 3in pieces & place in a ziploc bag when cooled. make marinade by combining all the ingredients
  2. marinade for 3 full days to infuse the wonderful flavours. place belly pork fully covered/drenched in a marinade bath in a pre-heated oven at 90degC for 5hrs. 90degC is the optimum temperature (fastest) for conversion of collagen the tough connective tissues to gelatine with excellent texture & flavours. this made the char siew especially the fatty parts, totally tender & delicious, & melt-in-the-mouth, such wonderful texture & flavours combined. 
  3. char on a non-stick pan on high heat. use butter or if you want higher temperatures, use vegetable oil. char the char siew on all sides, just few minutes. that will impart even more intense flavours to the char siew.
Advertisements

4pax Birthday ala Carte Buffet Lunch @ Jing on 28Dec2013

korean-styled beef ribs with kimchi

korean-styled beef ribs with kimchi

was buying a birthday lunch for a friend couple & decided to go Jing for the weekend ala carte buffet lunch on 28.12.2013.  Jing is a joint venture by majestic chef yong bing ngen & low lik peng. the location is better however somehow i always find majestic food better. anyhow had not been to jing for many years so thought i would try it out again. 🙂

the weekend ala carte buffet is S$48pax, with 1 fee for 3paying using citibank credit card. previously it was S$36pax also with the 1 free promotion but perhaps that was sometime ago. anyway these days most better ala carte buffet would have cost this amount. 🙂

1511144_10152093363234494_1453341894_n1508203_10152093363284494_62631816_n 1503861_10152093363329494_1037638245_n

fishmaw soup

fishmaw soup

peking duck

peking duck

previously peking duck was served at a cold cut station. this time it was served as a table order which was preferred. it was competent.

the fish maw soup was good as usual. we also tried the dumpling soup which was very tasty too!

we ordered 3 dim sum – a scallop dumpling, a deep-fried dragon beard scallop dumpling & a abalone crystal dumpling..they were good too.

signature wasabi prawns

signature wasabi prawns

chilean seabass topped with chye poh

chilean seabass topped with chye poh

deep-fried soon hock (marble goby)

deep-fried soon hock (marble goby)

chilli crab

chilli crab

monkey head mushrooms sichuan style

monkey head mushrooms sichuan style

sliced beef with sweet basil

sliced beef with sweet basil

shark fin on rice (泡饭)

shark fin on rice (泡饭)

杨枝甘露 - mango pomelo dessert

杨枝甘露 – mango pomelo dessert

the korean-styled galbi beef ribs with kimchi (top photo) was good as usual. the wasabi prawns were crispy, juicy, good, though my personal preference was for less mayo (like at majestic). the chilean seabass was kind of disappointment as majestic served a very tasty chilean seabass – this one was not firm & flat in taste.

the deep-fried soon hock was competent. the chilli crab was better than i expected as i had previously very poor chilli crab at majestic.

we had the monkey head mushroom dish – quite a meaningless nothing dish for me, just tasting the sweet sour “gong bao” taste.

the sliced beef with sweet basil was poor. most zi char did this better, even the S$9 thai basil beef set at le wu.

the sharkskin “pao fan”, a soupy rice dish, was also a dish that could do w/o, basically just eating carbo.

the mango pomelo dish was very average, nothing like that the 杨枝甘露 at tunglok signature.

birthday cake - swissbake paradiso

birthday cake – swissbake paradiso

overall, my guests felt it was quite a good lunch. i thought i was ok too, though i didn’t really think it was any better than peach garden’s ala carte buffet which was cheaper & had wider choice of food.

i got a birthday cake from swissbake called paradiso, & Jing kept, served & arranged for the birthday boy to bring back the cake. 🙂

c.h.e.f. andy