Char Siu (Chinese Barbecued Pork)
From Cook's Illustrated Best International Recipes cookbook.
If you don't have a wire rack that fits inside a rimmed baking sheet, substitute a broiler pan, although the meat may not darken as much. Do not use a drawer broiler in step 5 because the heat source will be too close to the meat and burn the glaze. Instead, increase the oven temperature in step 5 to 500 degrees and cook the pork for 8 to 12 minutes before glazing, then about 6 to 8 minutes once the glaze has been applied (on both sides). Serve with simple steamed white rice.
1 4 lb boneless pork butt, cut into 8 strips and trimmed of excess fat
0.5c soy sauce
6 tbsp hoisin sauce
0.25 c Chinese cooking rice wine or dry sherry
2 tbsp minced or grated fresh ginger
2 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through a garlic press
1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp Chinese five-spice powder
0.25 tsp white pepper
Using a fork, prick the pork 10 to 12 times on each side and place in a large ziploc bag.
Whisk the sugar, soy sauce, hoisin sauce, rice wine, ginger, garlic, sesame oil, five-spice powder and pepper together in a medium bowl. Reserve 0.5c of the marinade. Pour the remaining marinade into the bag with the pork. Seal, pressing out as much air as possible, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours. Flip the bag occasionally to ensure the pork marinates evenly.
While the pork marinates, combine the ketchup, honey and reserved marinade in a small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, whisking occasionally, until syrupy and the mixture measures about 1 cup, 4 to 6 minutes.
Adjust oven rack to the middle position. Heat the oven to 300°F.
Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Set a wire rack on the sheet, and spray the rack with vegetable oil spray.
Remove the pork from the marinade, letting the excess drip off. Place on the wire rack. Pour 0.25c water into the bottom of the sheet pan. Cover the pan with heavy duty aluminum foil, crimping the edges to tightly seal. Roast the pork for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and continue to roast until the edges of the pork begin to brown, 40 to 45 minutes.
Turn the oven to broil and broil the pork, leaving it on the same oven rack, until evenly browned, 7 to 9 minutes. Being careful of the hot juices in the bottom of the pan, remove the pan from the oven. Brush the pork with half the glaze, then continue to broil until the meat is a deep mahogany color, 3 to 5 minutes.
Using tongs, flip the meat over and continue to broil until the second side is evenly browned, 7 to 9 minutes. Being careful of the hot juices in the bottom of the pan, remove the pan from the oven. Brush the pork with the remaining glaze, then continue to broil until the meat is a deep mahogany color, 3 to 5 minutes.
Remove pork from the oven and let cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting into strips and serving.
- Using tamari instead of soy sauce will make this recipe gluten free.
- Preparing pork for char siu:
1. Cut the roast in half lengthwise.
2. Turn each half on the cut side and slice lengthwise into 4 equal pieces.
3. Trim the excess hard, waxy fat, leaving some fat to render while cooking.