Braised Pork with Muichoy

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Appears in

Chinese Heritage Cooking

Chinese Heritage Cooking

By Christopher Tan and Amy Van

Published 2018

  • About

There are two things that Hakka cuisine is indisputably famous for: pork dishes and the use of preserved and pickled ingredients. This rich and comforting stew showcases both. Combining both sweet and salty kinds of preserved mustard cabbage (mui choy) yields a more balanced flavour. You can use pork shoulder for a less fatty result, but the depth of flavour will not be quite the same. This dish tastes better the day after cooking.


  • Sweet preserved mustard cabbage (teem mui choy) 200 g (7 oz)
  • Salty preserved mustard cabbage (harm mui choy) 200 g (7 oz)
  • Pork belly 600 g (1 lb 5⅓ oz)
  • Cooking oil 1 Tbsp
  • Garlic 4 cloves, peeled and chopped
  • Ginger 3 slices
  • Sugar 1 Tbsp
  • Home-made yellow glutinous rice wine 4 Tbsp
  • Light soy sauce 1 Tbsp
  • Dark soy sauce 1 Tbsp
  • Sesame oil ½ tsp
  • Water 500 ml (16 fl oz / 2 cups)


  1. Soak sweet and salty preserved mustard cabbage in separate basins of water for 2–3 hours. Drain and rinse well, then squeeze dry. Chop into small strips.
  2. Set a dry non-stick pan over medium heat. When hot, add both sweet and salty preserved mustard cabbage to pan and dry-fry, stirring constantly for 4–5 minutes until cabbage looks a little drier. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  3. Cut pork belly into strips about 2-cm (¾-in) wide. Sear pork strips on all sides in the same dry non-stick pan over medium heat, until pork is lightly browned. It will not be cooked through. Let pork cool for a few minutes, then slice strips across into large bite-size pieces.
  4. Set a large clean pot over medium heat. Add oil and stir-fry garlic and ginger for 1–2 minutes, until softened and fragrant.
  5. Add sugar and glutinous rice wine and stir-fry for a few seconds, until wine has almost all evaporated. Add pork, preserved mustard cabbage, light and dark soy sauces, sesame oil and water and bring everything to a simmer. Cover and cook over very low heat for at least 2 hours, until pork is meltingly tender.
  6. Skim off excess fat if desired and adjust seasoning. Dish out and serve hot with rice.