Soy free braised pork belly 卤肉饭

My soy intolerance has made eating out really difficult, where most dishes seem to have some form of soy – whether it be soy sauce, hydrolysed soy protein (MSG) or tofu products.

Coupled with my crustacean allergy, and wheat intolerance – there is very little I can eat without some deleterious side effects. What has been good is that it has made me think about new dishes and I’m cooking a lot more at home.

This dish is what I whipped up for the both of us (the long suffering BH who has to go without because of me), a soy free version of lu rou fan, braised pork with rice and gravy.

Pork belly is braised with cloves, cinnamon stick, star anise, Coriander seeds, garlic, @hongspices red peppercorns, fish sauce. Served with stir fried greens, butter lettuce, and jasmine rice.

1kg pork belly, cut into 1cm strips
3 tbs of rendered lard (you can use vegetable oil, peanut oil but I prefer lard)
3 cloves garlic,peeled and smashed
1 large red onion, peeled and sliced thinly
1 tbs coriander seeds
1 tsp cracked red peppercorns from Hong Spices
1 cinnamon stick
5 cloves
3 star anise
6 tbs fish sauce (adjust according to taste, some fish sauces are saltier than others)
1 tsp sugar
500ml water

Over medium heat, place the onions and lard in a pot and cook until translucent. Add the garlic and spices and toast them for 3 minutes. Add the pork and let the meat brown, about 10 minutes. Add the sugar and fish sauce and water. Increase the heat and bring to a boil. Reduce to medium heat and let it simmer for about 30 minutes and liquid has been reduced by two thirds. Taste and adjust seasonings (ie sugar or fish sauce).
Remove from heat and serve!

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