Char Siu

A couple of years ago a friend of mine went to spend is Christmas holidays in the family of his Chinese friend. So, I decided to ask him how was Christmas was celebrated over there when I though of doing that journey around the world through 80 traditional Christmas dishes.
Christmas is celebrated in China, it is not a Holiday. Everybody works, children go to school. But, in the evening people exchange small presents and sit for a special dinner.
Char siu or Chinese barbecued roast pork was part of their meal and seems to be part of this Chinese family. Char siu has nothing to do with our western views on barbecued meat. It seems to be that Chinese barbecued roast pork was labelled "barbecued" due to his reddish and slightly charred look.

There is the recipe that my friend gave me:
  • 2kg of pork fillet
  • 2 tablespoons of honey, dissolved with a little water
For the Marinade:
  • 1 tablespoon demerara sugar
  • 1 tablespoon yellow bean sauce
  • 2 tablespoons light Chinese soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dark Chinese soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 2 tablespoons brandy
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
For the marinade, place all the ingredients into a bowl and mix them well together until the sugar has fully dissolved.

Cut the pork into strips about 4 cm thick and 18 - 20cm long, and marinate them, covered, for at least 24 hours, turning them occasionally.

The next day, start your oven at 220 degrees Celsius (450 Fahrenheit/Gas mark 7), and place a roasting or baking tray filled with about 1 pint (600 ml) boiling water at the bottom. Take the pork strips out of the marinade, drain them well and keep the marinade, you'll need it later. Put the tip of an S-shaped hook through one end of each strip, then hang the strips on the top rack in the oven, making sure they dangle freely.

Roast for 10 to 15 minutes, then reduce the oven to 180 degrees Celsius (350 F/Gas 4) and start glazing your strips of pork by basting them regularly with the marinade for 20 minutes. Remove the meat from the oven, let it cool down for 2 to 3 minutes, then carefully brush the strips with the honey "syrup", and lightly brown them under a medium hot grill for 4 to 5 minutes, turning them, from time to time.

When serving, cut the meat across the grain into thin slices, and make a sauce by reducing the marinade, the water and drippings from the baking tray together for a few minutes, then strain into a nice Chinese sauce dish.

*Picture thank to

Gluten free, lactose free, suitable for pregnant women.