There isn’t much to say about this stew, except that it is so good. It’s incredibly rich and flavorful, and you just need to try it. It’s the weekend–the perfect time for cooking projects–so dive in!
Burmese Red Pork Stew
Liberally adapted from Bon Appetit.
For the Marinade
1 cup soy sauce
¼ cup toasted sesame oil
¼ cup chili oil (or ¼ cup of vegetable oil with a squirt of Sriracha whisked in)
4 pounds pork shoulder (Boston butt), cut into 1′–1 1/2′ cubes
½ pound fresh pork belly, skin removed, cut into 1′–1 1/2′ cubes
For the Stew
2 tablespoon vegetable oil
16 garlic cloves, chopped
½ cup finely chopped peeled fresh ginger
¼ cup Sriracha
1 cup sugar
Steamed white rice
¼ cup chopped scallions
Chopped fresh cilantro
Chopped fresh basil
Marinate the meat: Whisk soy sauce, sesame oil, and chili oil in a medium bowl. Add pork shoulder and belly; toss to coat. Cover and chill, tossing occasionally, at least 6 hours or overnight.
Make the stew: Heat the oven to 425°. In a Dutch oven, heat the two tablespoons of vegetable oil over medium-high heat. Drain the pork and pork belly, reserving the marinade. Working in batches, cook the pork, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, about 4 minutes per batch. Transfer pork to a bowl. Spoon fat from surface of juices in the Dutch oven and discard. Reduce heat to medium, and sauté the pork belly until most of the fat has been rendered. Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of the fat, and add the garlic, ginger, and chili paste, and cook until fragrant, about a minute. Turn the heat to low, and return the pork, pork belly, and reserved marinade to pot.
Combine sugar and ¼ cup water in a saucepan over medium-low heat until sugar dissolves completely. Increase heat to medium-high and boil syrup, occasionally swirling and brushing down side of pan with a wet pastry brush (do not stir), until deep amber in color. Pour caramel over pork mixture. Add 3 cups water to saucepan; stir over medium heat to dissolve any remaining caramel. Pour caramel water into the Dutch oven with pork. Stir to blend. Cover tightly; bake, stirring every 30 minutes, until pork is very tender, about 90 minutes.
Spoon steamed rice into bowls. Ladle stew over steamed rice. Garnish with scallions and fresh herbs.