The other day, I mentioned how the pork sellers here were facing some kind of problem because the machine that they used for slaughtering broke down and everything had to be done manually. At that point in time, the news was going round via the Chinese newspapers that there might be a shortage of the meat so I went out right away to stock up on whatever I could lay my hands on and store it in my freezer.
I bought two bags of pork leg/trotters, half in each so the two together would be one complete leg and my missus cooked all of it already the other day. I also asked the lady at the shop to pick two slabs of pork belly that had less fat and a lot more lean and upon coming home, I packed them in two separate bags – they are still in the freezer.
We have cooked most of the chunks of lean meat available that morning. I do not know which part those cuts came from but they were very nice – not hard, not siap-siap unlike some lean meat that I had had the displeasure of eating.
When I checked the other morning, I found that there were two left so I marinated them in the char siew sauce…
…that I got from the roast meat stall when I bought the barbecued pork from there last month.
My colleague in one of my former schools used to make really nice char siew paos (steamed buns with barbecued meat filling) and she told me that she would just go to those stalls to buy the char siew sauce/oil to cook the filling.
I did not see them putting it in the plastic bag that day or I would have told them not to bother. Sometimes, I would use it for my fried rice but nobody in the house seemed to be crazy about it so most of the time, I would just throw it away. This time around, I thought I would try and make some char siew on my own with the lean meat that I had left.
My missus did make it once using that Uncle James’ char siew sauce…
…and it turned out to be very nice so she bought a few more packets to keep in the pantry and use when she feels the mood to cook that again. By the way, the herbs and spices for bak kut teh is also good, in case anybody is interested.
After a few hours, I placed the meat in the oven to cook for over an hour…
…just in time for our lunch that day. I had to turn the meat once or twice and brush it with the juices that came out of it.
It turned out great…
– very nice and tender. I sure enjoyed it but I think I would want it a bit more charred and siew-ed (burnt) so the next time around, I shall have to cook it a lot longer than just around one hour.
I guess the next time I buy anything from that roast meat stall, I shall happily accept the complimentary sauce that they give so I shall be able to cook more char siew on my own again.