When you are looking for authentic Sichuanese flavors, use or try the twice-cooked pork today. Not only will you never go wrong if you know how to make it, but you will also realize that it’s easy to make.
Through this, you will receive the spicy, tender, but also delicious pork style.
I know that although this is one of the most delicious choices, you will want to know how to make it yourself.
Check out our article on 26 Sides For Pulled Pork – What To Serve With Pulled Pork.
This article will find the tips and secrets to making the outstanding best twice-cooked pork.
The recipe will bring you the most tender and even richly flavored pork cooked in a delicious sauce.
It’s not every day you will have people making the pork for their dinner, but when you have the different and unique styles to make the recipe, you can use it.
The important cooking tips
Consider the kind of meat you are choosing.
Of course, you already have the meat on the table ready to work on it at this juncture.
Always choose the lean, fresh but also the healthy cuts. You should make sure it contains about 60 – 70% lean meat.
If you are not in Asian countries, you may not find the exact ones we use at home. However, you don’t have to worry because you can find such cuts in Asian grocery stores.
However, if you want to be like the Sichuanese chefs, you will be sure to pick the lean meat with the rind on. They like such became it delivers the chewy textures.
Of course, this is a Sichuanese chef’s secret. You will mostly understand the difference if you are Chinese or at least like the Chinese style of twice-cooked pork.
Here’s the thing though, if you don’t like the fatty pork belly, then you should cut off the fatty rinds while just leaving the meaty parts. Of course, when you then do this, your meat won’t come out so greasy.
You will often have delicious meat. The secret is to know how to prepare this meal then you are sure it won’t be a bad one.
Now how should you slice the meat?
Contrary to what you would mostly think, there are ways you should slice your pork if you want it to attain the perfect texture and flavors too.
Some people like it when you slice it thinner, while others enjoy the thick slices. I would say I love it thick-sliced.
For those who have fatty pork, the idea is usually for you to cut the meat thinly.
But I like it thick just because when you make it thin, it tends to become tough eventually.
What you should therefore remember is to cut the thick slices of the lean meat. Also, you’ll have it coming with about 20-30% fat. So then you should make the thicker slice of about ¼ inch.
This then means you will have more tender pork when you are done.
So the decision then is on you if you like it thick or thin is all a personal decision. But I kid you not, there will be a significant difference if you use the thick one.
How to make the twice-cooked pork?
The primary ingredients that will make the difference
Of course, there will be a list of ingredients you ought to buy, but then the ones we list here will make all the difference. The ingredients we are listing here must make the perfect sauce.
Remember, the sauce is everything when it comes to the meal.
Spicy fermented bean paste
This is not just any sauce you will find anywhere. In some shops, you can have it listed as Doubanjiang. This is one of the wealthiest sauces that is also flavored and spicy.
You will like it for its versatility, and thus you can use it on select meals.
This is one of the types they use the fava beans to make. But it will also have chili peppers, some wheat, and salt. This one is also the type you will age for between one to eight years.
I would say then it delivers the savory, spicy, salty, but also delicious taste. This is one of the most common ones when making most of the special Sichuanese meals.
The fermented black beans
This is also what we call douchi, and this then they like to pair with the Sichuanese chili bean paste to form the perfect blend for all the different meals.
You will know it through the aromatic and umami flavors. Again this is one of the few types that are also earthy, salty, but also bitter.
In most cases, you will find it in most Chinese stores, and then they also look nicely dried. I tell people to choose the dried ones and not necessarily the salty ones.
Here then you will have the dried ginger as well. This is one of the sauces that we believe you should have just because it’s richly flavored and delicious.
Leek, green garlic, or celery
When you are going to make the twice-cooked pork, then you should never miss the green garlic. It makes all the difference. The green garlic then is the young form of garlic.
Notice that you could mistake it for the scallion just because it looks almost the same.
Also, you will have garlicky tastes, and it remains one of the healthiest options you will have. Of course, if you don’t have the green garlic, you can use the celery or the leek.
Sweet bean sauce
In Chinese, we refer to Tian Mian Jiang, which directly translates to sweet flour sauce. I know that it’s not a very common sauce here in America, yet it makes the difference in the flavors.
Expect this to deliver the perfect sweetness with the umami flavors. Of course, they will ferment it too, and that then makes the difference to the dish.
Do I have to use the sauces?
If you want to make an outstanding meal, then you won’t miss the sauces for anything. These sauces you then choose to use in the pork are not any type you buy; they make sure to deliver the Asian flavors.
For the years it takes for them to mature, you can be sure it will attain the perfect and ultimately the umami flavors.
How to make the twice-cooked pork?
You can be sure that this recipe will even serve you when you have significant and special events. Note that when you make the sauce right, then you will have the perfect meal in no time.
- 300g pork belly with skin,
- 5 green garlic,
- half a red pepper,
- 5 slices of ginger,
- 3 cloves of garlic
For the sauce
- 2 tablespoons of Pixian bean paste,
- 1 tablespoon of light soy sauce,
- 1 tablespoon of cooking wine,
- 1/2 tablespoon of fine sugar,
- 1 tablespoon of steamed fish soy sauce,
- 1 tablespoon of sesame oil,
- An appropriate amount of salt.
Another sauce style
Use the following sauces we already mentioned.
- 2 Tbsps. of doubanjiang (fermented spicy bean paste)
- 2 Tbsps. of douchi
- 2 tbsp. of Shaoxing wine.
The pre-preparation of the pork
This is not your regular pork, so you will need to cook it a little bit before slicing it.
To clean the pork
Even though you may have bought it already cleaned, you should wash it once more. Take the time to clean all the parts of the pork. Next, take another pot or the same one and add enough amount of water.
Add the meat making sure the water covers it to the very top.
Give it about ten minutes to cook after the water reaches the boiling point. You can add some slices of ginger to tenderize it quickly or just flavor it for a difference.
After the ten minutes elapse, use chopsticks to poke the meat through, pick it up, soak in cold water, and drain.
For the veggies and herbs cutting:
You will need to prepare the veggies and herbs you have. You will need to prepare the green garlic, cut the red pepper into sections, slice the ginger, and mince the garlic.
The image below will show you how you want to prepare the ingredients.
Cut the meat into thin slices.
You will do this just because this recipe requires you to use the thin slices while others allow the thicker ones. So if you like it thick, then cut the thick slices at this point.
For this case, we prefer to cut the meat 1:1, where the fat is the same as the meat.
The essence of this style of cut is to attain a crispier texture. If you are not the one who likes the pork fat and you had cut it off, you will need to cut the meat a little thicker.
For the stir-frying process:
Heat your wok under very high heat. Check that it’s too hot to the extent it’s starting to smoke. Next, add a little oil, add ginger slices, minced garlic slices and stir fry. Also, add on the meat cuts and start to stir fry it.
Fry until the meat is yellowed and the meat is oily and nicely flavored. Set the meat to the side of the pan. Now that you have some space already created, you can add the Pixian bean paste.
Stir-fry the sauce
Your sauce you can keep cooking under lower heat until you have the red oil. Make sure you are cooking over low heat. When you have it becoming oily, then you can mix in the pork pieces.
Turn to high heat to stir fry the remaining veggies.
Add red pepper and garlic white, then keep stir-frying as you add cooking wine, light soy sauce, and sugar. Take the time as you go on stirring it gently.
How about the green garlic?
Now it’s time to add the green garlic to the mixture. If you don’t have the garlic, remember we said you could add the celery or leek. But garlic is the best to use at any time.
Add on the fish source.
Pour in steamed fish soy sauce and stir fry. Allow it time to keep on stir-frying and also cooking.
Stir-fry and get out of the pot, ready to serve with your delicious side dish of choice.
Making the second sauce option
I prefer to use this sauce when I have guests around, and I would like to make an unforgettable meal.
- 1/3 vegetable oil
- ½ cup of doubanjiang
- 3 tablespoons of douche
- 1/3 sweet bean sauce
- Some ginger
- 1/3 Shaoxing wine.
- 2 Tbsp. of sugar.
Take a medium-size skillet and then add on the oil and the Doubanjiang. Go on to add the douche as well and cover to cook over medium heat. Then start to simmer the mixture and allow it to cook for 1-2 minutes.
As you keep cooking it, you will notice that the oil or sauce starts to turn red, and it’s very aromatic.
Go on to add the ginger, garlic, Shaoxing wine and stir the mixture nicely. Keep on cooking as you are allowing the alcohol to evaporate. Now keep checking to avoid burning. If the sauce gets too dry, you will need to add some water to make it just saucy.
Now you can turn the heat down. Also, add the sweet bean sauce together with the remaining sugar and mix it all. Transfer it to the bowl and give it time to cool off.
You can use it in your stir fry, especially when you were adding the fish sauce in the previous sauce. If you are not going to use it on the twice-cooked pork.
When to add the sauce
Remember, you don’t want the sauce to get the food burning. This is why you will only add it at the very end when you have finished cooking. If you want to, you can add the sauces to the meat or the veggies.
Do it as the Sichuanese do for better results?
Please make sure the pork you’re choosing still has its skin on, and this then will maintain the perfect texture. You can use the regular pork, but when you want the authentic flavors, chose the one with the skin.
For the first time when you just boiled the pork, you usually haven‘t cut it.
So then you should remove it from the boiling water and immerse it in cold water. The essence of this is to make the meat firm and crispy. Also, it will be much easier to cut into slices.
Be gentle with the salt you are using.
Pixian bean paste, light soy sauce, and steamed fish soy sauce are all salty. So take it easy and don’t add too much salt or even add salt at all. Taste it before serving to see if you need to add salt.
Remember to add some veggies to the pork. Traditionally, you should use scallions, but you can add on some peppers, onions, and the likes if you want. The one thing you will like about them is that they’ll create a rich sauce for you.
Use nonstick wok
It would help if you always used the nonstick wok. When you are stir-frying, you want the food not to stick, so you should consider the wok you use. But when the oil is smoking, you need to start cooking the pork. It’s even better as it makes it easier for cleanup.
What does it mean when you say it’s twice-cooked?
If you have noticed, we cooked the pork twice. The very first time is before we even cut into the pork.
Cooking twice makes sure the pork cooks properly through the fat and into the meat. In the end, you won’t damage the lean meat parts. So the lean parts then will not even become that tough.
You can add the aromatics to make the pork cook right and give it more flavors and deliciousness.
You will use broth, spices, and garlic for the flavoring. But you may also use Sichuan peppercorns and also Shaoxing wine. The secret is then to let it simmer. So then keep checking to confirm that the fat part is cooked.
What could be the best side dish?
You can almost use anything you want as a side dish but especially the rice. I like that you can cook rice in different methods.
I like my fried rice, but you can even use just the white rice if you like to make it even more delicious.
For some, potatoes are a great addition. You can make them roast potatoes, mashed ones, or even the fried option.
Some of us like twice-cooked pork with noodles. We never miss noodles on the table, so we have to add the tremendous spicy and delicious complete meal.
Can kids eat it?
This depends on their palate needs. Do they like spicy foods? Then yes they will enjoy this meal. Otherwise, let them grow, and maybe they will like it when they can eat spicy food.
For us, flavor, spice, and hot meals make the difference. Whether you have ever tried our meals or not, I know you will like our meal styles.