BBQ pork (Char Siu)

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Char Siu,  (or Chinese BBQ pork) is something that I eat since I was a child, {developed by the Cantonese society} and is a dish that we usually eat as a celebration dish for Pre-Chinese New Year, or celebration of any special dates. I remembered that when I first came to Sydney, (well at least 15 years ago), this dish isn’t too popular and that many Western people probably don’t even know what it is. However, since the Chinese culture has made its influence to the society, it has then became simply an alternative “substitute” dish for many take-away-er.. 🙂 In fact, many of my Western friends love it and always order it during YUM- CHa times, oh yes, you get to see them moving around in trolleys at yum cha..

So many people know that BBQ pork is this red sweet-salty pork dish and it’s char-grilled, but what is it exactly? Well, yes it is pork (straight forward), but it also insist of a lot of Chinese flavors or ingredients, I would say.. Chinese 5-spice, Chinese rice wine, hoisin sauce, rose wine, and soy sauce. If you were to make the Char siu sauce from scratch, it isn’t hard, but today, I thought I would give you a quicker “short-cut”, the thing is in today’s society, pre-made char–siu sauce is easily reachable in many Asian grocery shops, if you are really thinking to buy one, I would definitely recommend LEE-KUM-KEE Char Siu sauce, just because I think its flavour and texture is quite authentic. But if you are deciding to make it from scratch, please be patient .. cause I’ll be making a good post for you.. but just not yet… 🙂

So now, stick with the short-cut, and let’s begin!

You’ll need:

  • 750 grams pork scotch fillet
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 6 tablespoons char siu sauce
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon of Shao Xing rice wine

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How to?

  1. Rinse and cut pork into strips at about 5cm in width and 15cm in length. Add Char Siu sauce, rice wine and garlic with the pork and mix well until fully incorporated. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate in the fridge overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 200°C. Place 2 sheet of aluminium foil onto  a baking tray and lay pork strips on top, separate them apart around 2cm gap. Use a cooking brush, brush a layer of the marinade onto the top of the pork surfaces. Place another piece of foil on top and bake for 30 minutes. (Do not discard the marination sauce!!)bbqpork 05
  3. Remove the baking tray from the oven, uncovered and turn the pork strips onto the other side. Apply another layer of the marinade to the top of each pork strip. Cover the aluminium foil and place it back into the oven for another 20 minutes.
  4. Remove the tray again from the oven, discard the top foil paper. Brush a layer of honey onto the surface of the pork strips. Bake for 10 minutes.
  5. Repeat step 4 (and remember to turn the pork strip on the other side every time you take it out), until honey has finished.
  6. Once the pork gradually turn red in color and in a charcoal appearance, it is completed.bbqpork 03
  7. Turn off the heat, leave the BBQ pork stand for 10 minutes in the oven.
  8. When the pork cool down, slice and arrange. Serve with steam rice as desired.


  • The purpose of repeating step 4 over and over again is to ensure there is a consistency in flavour and texture. If you apply honey all in one go, it can become too thick and heavy. The pork strips will not absorb the honey into the core. It also allows the honey to burn quicker.
  • Do not cut the pork once they are ready from the oven. By leaving it in the oven to cool down, the pork re-store and absorb the juice flavour. If cutting too early, the flavour will reduce and leak out.

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Idea adapted from Rasa Malysia and Christine’s Receipe


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