This Char Siu Pork is almost identical to what you would find in a Chinese restaurant. The name means “fork-roasted”, and it is typically hung over an open flame or in an oven of sorts and roasted until the skin is crispy and slightly charred. When eaten with rice, as I did, the dish is called cha siu fan. You can find char siu pork almost anywhere, and if you’ve never had it before, I highly recommend it. This is a staple in Chinese barbecue and you can’t continue to miss out!
Anyway, I’m pretty proud of this recipe. Especially because I wrote up a recipe that I thought would work and handed it off to Kramer to make, as I had to go to work and wouldn’t be home until 8 PM. It turned out wonderfully, believe it or not! Kramer is a really fantastic cook when he does set foot in the kitchen, and it was so nice to come home from a long day to have dinner waiting for me. The skin itself was out of the world. It was marinated in soy sauce, oyster sauce, granulated sugar, brown sugar, Chinese 5-spice powder, ground ginger, and brushed with honey. The result was a sweet, sticky, and slightly crispy outside with a tender inside. Char siu pork is traditionally made with hoisin sauce, but I was out and oyster sauce is similar in that it is a dark, sweet, slightly pungent sauce. I was very happy to find that the taste was not altered too much by the change; I didn’t notice a difference, but I’m sure a seasoned char siu veteran might. I spooned some of the juices from the pan over the pork before I broiled it, then after broiling it for a few minutes, I brushed it with some honey, as per usual when making char siu, which not only made it look beautiful, it added some extra light sweetness that paired well with the pork and helped to make a nice sauce for the rice. This recipe is so easy and so rewarding, so I hope you’ll make some of this delicious Chinese barbecue in your home soon!
Place your pork in a sealable bag or container and add in the marinade. Make sure your pork is as submerged in the marinade as possible and refrigerate for a minimum of 3 hours and as long as overnight.
- 3 pounds boneless pork (butt, tenderloin, shoulder, etc.)
- ¼ cup + 1 tablespoon low-sodium soy sauce
- ¼ cup oyster sauce
- 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 2½ teaspoons Chinese 5-Spice powder
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground ginger
- 3 drops red food coloring
- ¼ cup honey, for brushing over the pork
- 2 cups rice, cooked according to package directions, for serving
- Combine the soy sauce, oyster sauce, vinegar, white sugar, brown sugar, Chinese 5-Spice powder, salt, and ginger in a bowl and whisk together. Place your pork in a large sealable bag or container, then add in the marinade. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours, but overnight is best for the skin to become saturated with the sweet marinade.
- Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Line and/or grease a large rimmed pan or dish and place the pork in it. Cover the pan or dish with tinfoil and bake for 25 minutes. Take the pork out of the oven, flip it on its other side, and bake for another 25 minutes.
- Take the pork out of the oven and turn the oven’s heat up to 450 degrees F, or your broiler setting. Broil the pork for another 5-8 minutes, until the skin is crispy and shiny. Take the pork out, baste it with some of the juices from the pan, and brush with the honey.
- Slice at a 45 degree angle and serve over cooked rice. Serves 2-3.