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Braised Pork Belly with Preserved Mustard Greens in a pot.
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Braised Pork Belly with Preserved Mustard Greens

Grandma's Braised Pork Belly with Preserved Mustard Greens is caramelized and super juicy. It's seared for flavor then simmered in a thick sauce!
Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time3 hrs 30 mins
Total Time4 hrs 30 mins
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Asian, Cantonese, Chinese
Servings: 6
Calories: 1888kcal
Author: Jeannette

Equipment

  • kitchen twine/butcher's string

Ingredients

  • 1 kg / 2.2 lb pork belly
  • 1 bag preserved mustard greens (we get it from the local Asian supermarket; each bag is roughly 450g/1 lb)
  • 5 cloves garlic (finely chopped)
  • 4 1/4 tbsp sugar (1 tbsp for the vegetables and 3 1/4 for the meat)
  • 1 1/4 tbsp dark soy sauce (or to taste)
  • 3 1/4 tbsp oyster sauce (to taste; or use a substitute)
  • 5 tbsp oil (3 tbsp for the vegetables and 2 tbsp for the pork)
  • 2 tbsp chicken bouillon powder (1 tbsp for each main ingredient)

Instructions

  • Wash, rinse, then soak the mui choy for 30 minutes or until the leaves start to fan out. Once they've fanned out, rinse the vegetable thoroughly under running cool water to remove the sand and impurities.
    Note: You may need to wash it a few more times for a deep clean.
  • Wring the mui choy until dry, then leave aside as you prepare the other ingredients.
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Meanwhile, roll the pork belly into a log with the skin side out and wrap kitchen twine (or butcher's string) around it until it's tied tightly, then make a knot to hold the string in place.
    Alternatively, watch this video on how to tie a butcher's knot.
  • Put the tied log into the boiling water and let it cook on medium heat for 2 hours or until soft.
  • While the pork belly is cooking, use a knife to slice off the hard bits of the mui choy. These can generally be found at the base of the vegetable.
  • Finely chop the vegetables.
  • When the meat is cooked, take it out and let it cool enough to remove the twine. Slice them into 1.5cm (0.6") thick pieces, then cut each one in half or into thirds. Let it rest while you start the next step.
    Note: You can slice them as thick or thin as you like. Grandma just always made them on the thicker side.
  • Heat up a pot on high heat and pour 3 tbsp oil in.
  • When hot, turn the heat to medium and cook half the garlic for 30 seconds.
  • Turn the heat back up to high and pour the chopped mui choy in.
  • Season with 1 tbsp chicken bouillon powder and 1 tbsp sugar, then stir for 5 minutes. Pour the contents into a dish for later.
  • Add 2 tbsp oil into the emptied pot and when hot, turn the heat to low.
  • Tip in the remaining garlic in to saute for 30 seconds, then turn the heat up to high and pour the sliced pork in.
  • Let it sear on all sides for 3 minutes or until golden.
  • Season with the oyster sauce, dark soy sauce, 1 tbsp chicken bouillon powder and 3 1/4 tbsp oyster sauce, then stir until well combined.
  • Pour the cooked vegetables in and mix for 3 minutes. Let it simmer for another 15-20 minutes on low heat to absorb the flavor.
  • Serve immediately as is over rice!

Notes

  • Use a butcher's knot to tie the meat. This ensures that the skin isn't creased with numerous kitchen twine lines.
  • Wring the vegetables well. By doing so, you'll remove any excess liquid that might dilute the sauce's flavor.
  • Taste test as you go. Every brand of mui choy will have a different level of saltiness, so it's important to season according to your preferred taste.
  • Choose the lighter brown vegetables. If the're too black or dark, it could mean that they're old.
  • We get preserved mustard greens (a.k.a 'mui choy' in Cantonese) from Asian grocery stores. They come in plastic packaging and are heavily salted to keep them preserved. Different brands will have different levels of saltiness.
  • If you prefer to use a leaner cut of pork, I would suggest tenderloin.

Nutrition

Calories: 1888kcal | Carbohydrates: 54g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 191g | Saturated Fat: 65g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 22g | Monounsaturated Fat: 90g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 240mg | Sodium: 981mg | Potassium: 645mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 9g | Vitamin A: 34IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 28mg | Iron: 2mg