How to Make Braised Pork Belly

This delicious recipe for how to make braised pork belly is straight from the kitchen at Sydney’s beloved Chuuka restaurant.

Whether you eat it braised, sticky, crispy or slow-roasted, there is no denying that pork belly is one of those meals that you always devour. We called upon chef Son Sewoo, chef de cuisine at The Star Sydney’s Chuuka restaurant, to share his delicious recipe for pork belly.

Pork Belly with Bok Choi
Pork Belly with Bok Choi
Master stock
  • 5g star anise                 
  • 6g cardamom
  • 13g cinnamon stick                                          
  • 7g chilli                         
  • 4g Szechuan peppercorn
  • 5g fennel seed              
  • 800g soy sauce                                    
  • 340kg brown sugar                                          
  • 4000g water                                          
  • 200g black vinegar                               
  • 70g yellow rock sugar
Braised pork belly     
  • 1kg of pork belly                           
  • 2kg master stock (from the recipe above)
  • 2 bunches baby bok choy
  • 60ml ginger oil Japanese Kuzu powder, to thicken
  1. Cook all spices on a dry pan until they release their aroma.                                        
  2. Prepare a large pot and add all liquid ingredients. Add aromatic spices and remaining master stock ingredients.
  3. Once boiling, turn the heat down and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and cool at room temperature for 30 minutes. Strain and cool in the fridge.
  4. Prepare a pot of boiling water and cook pork belly over medium to high heat for 45 minutes. Remove pork from water.                                          
  5. Cut pork belly into square pieces and mix with soy sauce.           
  6. Deep fry the pork belly skin side down at 160°C until the skin is crispy, approximately 2-3 minutes. Make sure the pork is skin side down when you deep fry it. Once fried, cool the pork belly in an ice bath.                
  7. Place the pork belly and 180ml of master stock into a vacuum bag and seal properly. If you have sous vide water bath (or sous vide water circulator), place the bag in water set to 74°C and make sure the bag is fully submerged. Cook for 12 hours.
  8. Cut baby bok choy in quarters, then blanch in boiling water with salt, sugar and ginger oil. Finish with starch to give shine.
  9. Heat up pork belly in a bag in a water bath for 10 minutes. Do not keep for too long to prevent overcooking the pork belly.
  10. Thicken braised liquid with Japanese Kuzu powder, then pour over the pork belly and serve.
Chef’s Top Tip

For home cooking, place the pork belly in a bowl, add master stock until the pork belly is halfway submerged, then place the bowl in a bamboo basket with a lid on top. Prepare a pot of boiling water and place the bamboo basket over the pot. Turn heat to low so the bamboo basket does not catch alight. If you have an induction stovetop, simmer water over medium heat – and take note of the level of the water as you do not want it to overflow.

CHUUKA Braised Pork Belly
CHUUKA Braised Pork Belly