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- spaQRED BRAISED PORK WITH SHITAKE MUSHROOMS3kg pork belly, cut into 1kg pieces10 litres water1 bottle shao xing wine2 small knobs ginger, peeled and finely sliced150g garlic cloves, finely sliced750g shallots, peeled and left whole400ml light soy sauce180ml dark soy sauce1 ½ cups crushed yellow rock sugar12 whole star anise10 cinnamon sticks2 mandarins, peel only, pith removed30 whole dried shitake mushrooms150ml sesame oilMethod: Put the pork into the large stock pot and add the water. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes, skimming regularly to remove any scum. Add the shao xing, ginger and garlic and simmer for a further 30 minutes. Add the shallots, both soy sauces, sugar, star anise, cinnamon and mandarin peel. Continue to simmer for a further 1 ½ to 2 hours, or until the pork is tender. Remove the pork from the stock and keep both the stock and the pork separate, before refrigerating separately overnight. The next day, soak the shitake mushrooms in warm water for about 20 minutes, then drain and remove the stalks. Skim the fat from the cold stock, return to the stove, bring to the boil and add the mushrooms. Reduce the mixture until around 1500ml of liquid remain, then keep warm.To complete the dish, cut the pork belly into 2cm cubes and deep fry until very crisp. Place a portion of sauce into a wok (making sure you scoop from the bottom of the pot and include many of the whole mushrooms, shallots and aromatic vegetables/spices as possible) Bring to the boil and add a portion of pork belly (use a ratio of 3 parts pork to 1 part stock), simmer for a few minutes then pour into a wok and serve garnished with mandarin rind, coriander and a bowl of steamed white rice.
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