Wok-roasted char siu

  • 4
  • 40 minutes plus 2 hours marinating time

Char siu pork is a famous Cantonese style of Chinese barbecued pork. Amy Poon shares her recipe for a wok-roasted version, which after being marinated can be ready in just half an hour. Serve simply with steamed rice or as part of a larger spread of Chinese dishes.

First published in 2022

Amy says: 'There are as many char siu recipes as there are chefs who make it. This recipe is purist in its approach, requires no specialist equipment and is made on the stove top with only six ingredients. If you cannot find Chinese rose liquor (Mei Kwei Lu Chiew), you can substitute any alcohol that has an ABV of over 50%. This is important as anything with a lower ABV will not penetrate the meat sufficiently.'





  • Large wok



Combine the salt, sugar, rose liquor, light soy sauce and garlic in a large shallow dish and stir to dissolve the sugar


Place the pork belly strips into the marinade and massage well all over. Set aside for 20 minutes. The pork will produce a little liquid


Massage the pork again in the now wetter marinade until the lean meat in the pork belly feels smooth and silky to the touch. Leave to marinade for a further 1.5 hours 


After this time, heat the vegetable oil in a wok and add the pork belly strips in one layer (so they are not overlapping.) Pour over the marinade, bring to the boil and cover. Cook for 2–3 minutes, all the while swirling your wok over the heat to prevent the pork from sticking and burning

  • 1 tbsp of vegetable oil

Turn the heat down to medium and turn the pork over. Continue this process until the sugar caramelises and the pork takes on colour. This should take about 20–25 minutes. Remove from the wok, sprinkle over sesame oil, slice diagonally and serve

  • 1 tsp sesame oil
First published in 2022

Amy is the founder of Poon's London, a Chinese bistro, deli and grocery concept which produces oils, sauces and condiments as well as wontons and other popular Chinese dishes.

Get in touch

Please sign in or register to send a comment to Great British Chefs.

You may also like

Load more