Perfect medley of meat and yam


CHINESE New Year dishes are often perceived to be time-consuming and require a joint effort from every family member.

But when you discover a shortcut, it makes perfect sense to prepare a complicated dish by eliminating a few difficult steps.

‘Woo tau kau yoke’ is a traditional Hakka meatloaf.‘Woo tau kau yoke’ is a traditional Hakka meatloaf.

For anyone who has ever made woo tau kau yoke, a Hakka dish that involves frying seasoned pork belly in hot oil then steaming it for a few hours, that first step of preparing the pork can be substituted with store-bought roast pork.

The seasoning for roast pork is essentially salt and five-spice powder, the exact same flavouring as the marinade for the fried pork.

Plus, you escape possible explosions of the meat frying in hot oil and splattering the entire kitchen.

Woo tau kau yoke translates literally as “yam (or taro) interlocked with meat” or more crudely, “yam hooked on meat”.

Roast pork belly and yam are the main ingredients for ‘woo tau kau yoke’Roast pork belly and yam are the main ingredients for ‘woo tau kau yoke’

It basically means it’s a meatloaf where the yam and meat have melded together into one entity.

So it also makes perfect sense to assemble this dish in a loaf pan so that when inverted, you can present the neat layers of yam and meat in a block.

Some people may even forgo frying the yam before assembling the loaf, but I find that this step helps to keep the yam intact when inverting onto the serving plate.

Another variant of the recipe is to steam the loaf with just meat and yam without the gravy.

Blend together ginger, garlic, sugar, oyster sauce, chicken stock, five-spice powder and red fermented beancurd to steam the yam and pork slices in.Blend together ginger, garlic, sugar, oyster sauce, chicken stock, five-spice powder and red fermented beancurd to steam the yam and pork slices in.

Only after the long braise are the steamed juices poured into a wok to thicken with the gravy seasoning and drizzled back to dress the inverted loaf.

Whichever method you use, you can be sure that it will be packed with flavour and will become a showstopper at any Chinese New Year dinner.

When presenting this dish at the table, your family will assume that you’ve spent hours preparing it.

But take these shortcuts, and you can be sure that you’ll be hooked on preparing this dish all year-round.

Place yam and pork slices in alternating layers, then pour in the sauce and water before steaming.Place yam and pork slices in alternating layers, then pour in the sauce and water before steaming.

Pork Belly with Yam

(woo tau kau yoke)

Ingredients

800g roast pork belly

700g yam



Gravy dressing

1 knob ginger

4 cloves garlic

1 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp five-spice powder

4 tbsp Shaoxing wine

1 tbsp dark soya sauce

2 cubes red fermented beancurd + 1 tbsp beancurd liquid

1 cup cold water

1 tsp cornstarch + 1/2 cup water

Steam at medium heat for one to one-and-a-half hours until the meat is tender and the yam is soft. — Photos: SAMUEL ONG/The StarSteam at medium heat for one to one-and-a-half hours until the meat is tender and the yam is soft. — Photos: SAMUEL ONG/The Star

Method

Skin the yam, cut into a 10x6x8cm block, then into slices about 1cm thick, using a loaf pan as your guide for the fit.

Deep-fry the yam for about 1-2 minutes until the exterior is seared. Drain and set aside

Cut the roast pork belly into the same size and thickness as the yam and set aside.

Grease your loaf pan with cooking oil. Arrange the pork and yam in alternating layers into the loaf pan with the pork skin facing the bottom of the tin.

Blend all the gravy ingredients into a fine paste. Pour in the gravy dressing to cover all the meat and the yam. Add cold water until it covers the meat and yam. Steam at medium heat for one to one-and-a-half hours until the meat is tender and the yam is soft.

Once the meat is ready, drain all the steam juices into a wok, bring to a boil and thicken with cornstarch slurry.

Invert the meat and yam loaf carefully onto a serving plate. Drizzle gravy over the loaf, garnish with chopped scallions and coriander leaves, and serve with steamed rice.

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 18
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3

Pork belly with taro , Retro Recipe , Kuali

   

Did you find this article insightful?

Yes
No

100% readers found this article insightful

Next In Food News

Rocking with sweet and savoury notes
Steamed nian gao a festive must-have for year-round good fortune
Comforting flavours in fusion mix
Festive cookies with unique twist on classic flavours
Citrusy treat for Chap Goh Meh
These Malaysian sisters' love affair with kuih kapit spans over 35 years
This Malaysian grandmother makes kok chai using a 90-year-old recipe Premium
Lovely Valentine’s Day treat
Love on the menu
10 local chefs’ culinary creations compiled in recipe book featuring reunion dishes

Stories You'll Enjoy


Vouchers