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Thit Kho in a wok
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5 from 9 votes

Thit Kho (Vietnamese Braised Pork Belly and Eggs in Coconut Water)

Thit Kho is a Vietnamese dish that makes the most out of pantry ingredients. Pork belly is braised in coconut water until fall apart tender!
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time55 mins
Course: Breakfast, Dinner, Lunch, Main Course, Side Dish
Cuisine: Asian, Vietnamese
Servings: 5
Calories: 1191kcal
Author: Jeannette

Equipment

  • Cleaver

Ingredients

  • 10 eggs (or to preference)
  • 1 kg pork belly
  • 6 tbsp fish sauce (or to taste)
  • 5 tsp sugar (or to taste)
  • 2 tbsp chicken bouillon powder
  • 4 US cup coconut water
  • 3/4 US cup water

Instructions

  • Boil the eggs for 12 minutes or until hardboiled, then peel them and set aside in a bowl.
  • Cut the meat into 5cm or 2" chunks.
    Note: If you like the pieces in Thit Kho smaller, cut them to your liking.
  • Extract the juice from the coconuts. If you're using fresh coconuts, lay them on their side and chop the cleaver down about 3cm (or 1″) from the coconut’s point. Rotate the coconut and repeat until the whole tip is removable.
    Pull the top off and pour the juice into a bowl and repeat for all the coconuts.
  • On a high heat, add the sugar and stir continuously until it begins clumping together.
  • Pour in a tablespoon of water and stir until combined. Repeat this step a tablespoon at a time with the remaining water. By the end, you will have a dark brown caramel sauce.
  • Add the fish sauce in and stir until well combined. 
  • While the heat is still on high, put the eggs in and roll them through the sauce until they're evenly coated and have turned a slight golden color.
    Scoop the eggs out and set them aside in a bowl.
  • Add the pork belly into the sauce and brown them on all sides.
  • Pour the coconut water in and season with chicken bouillon powder. Stir well then bring to a boil with the lid partially on. As soon as it boils, turn the heat to medium and let it gently simmer for 20 minutes.
  • After 20 minutes of simmering, put the eggs back into the pot.
  • Simmer on low heat for another 10 minutes or until the pork is tender.
  • Serve immediately with steaming hot rice!

Notes

  • Use fresh coconut water. Packaged bottles are readily available in supermarkets, but nothing beats fresh coconut water free from any additives.
  • Find a good balance of fat and meat. For juicy, succulent pork and sauce flavor, use a cut that has a generous amount of fat and meat.
  • Cook it low and slow. The longer the meat is braised on lower heat, the more flavorful tender it becomes.
  • Roll the eggs. When they're back in the pot a second time, roll them in the sauce every 10 minutes to keep the color even on all sides.
  • Make it a meatless dish by swapping the pork out for fried tofu instead.
  • Use quail eggs if you prefer smaller eggs.
  • Thit Kho is traditionally made with belly, but if you prefer other cuts then pork will also work well in this dish.

Nutrition

Calories: 1191kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 31g | Fat: 115g | Saturated Fat: 41g | Cholesterol: 472mg | Sodium: 2363mg | Potassium: 554mg | Sugar: 6g | Vitamin A: 495IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 72mg | Iron: 3mg