Vietnamese Braised Pork
This hearty, savoury dish has some affinities with a Chinese dish from Shanghai, but is simpler to make. Vietnamese cooks use fish sauce instead of soy sauce, which gives a different but equally tasty result. An added bonus is that it reheats extremely well.
- About 3 tbsp groundnut oil
- 1kg pork belly, including the rind, cut into 5cm (2in) pieces
- 6 spring onions, cut into 7.5cm x 5mm (3 x 1/4in) pieces
- 600 ml home-made chicken stock or good-quality bought stock
- 3 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp salt
- 2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tbsp fish sauce
Heat a wok or large frying pan over a high heat. Add the oil and, when it is very hot and slightly smoking, fry the pieces of pork belly in it until they are crisp and brown all over (cover the wok to prevent splattering).Add more oil if necessary. Remove the pork from the wok and drain well.
Put the spring onions, stock, sugar, salt and pepper into a large casserole and bring to a simmer. Add the browned pork belly and simmer slowly, uncovered, for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. The mixture should become quite dry, but do watch that it doesn’t burn.
Stir in the fish sauce and cook for another 5 minutes, then serve.