Pulled pork with okonomiyaki (Japanese savoury pancakes)
- March 2018
- Serves 6 (with plenty of leftover pork)
- Hands-on time 30 min, oven time 8-12 hours
Impress your guests with a Japanese-style brunch of melt-in-the-mouth pulled pork on top of a crispy, savoury okonomiyaki (savoury cabbage pancake). Drizzle with mayonnaise, sriracha and scatter with coriander for a brunch dish with layers of flavour.
Making it a boozy brunch? Then pair these pancakes with a Japanese-style bloody Mary with a wasabi kick.
- 28.8g (5.3g saturated)
- 55.4g (15.7g sugars)
- 2-3kg pork shoulder, skin scored (ask your butcher to do this for you)
- Olive oil for rubbing
- Sea salt flakes
- 2 tbsp gochujang
- 2 tbsp Japanese soy sauce
- 3cm piece fresh ginger, sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 tbsp honey
- 2 carrots, cut in half lengthways
- 125g pack baby spring onions
- 4 star anise
- 1 large cinnamon stick, broken in half
- 300ml fresh vegetable stock
- 2 tsp fennel seeds
For the okonomiyaki pancakes
- 300g plain flour
- 6 medium free-range eggs, beaten
- 300ml fresh vegetable stock
- 1 pointed cabbage (also called hispi or sweetheart), thinly shredded
- 3 carrots, grated
- 2 tbsp chopped pickled sushi ginger
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
Sauces to serve
- 5 tbsp good quality mayonnaise
- 1 tbsp sweet white miso (from the international section of large supermarkets and delis)
- Few slices sushi ginger, shredded
- ½ bunch coriander, leaves picked and roughly chopped, plus extra to serve
- Sriracha sauce to drizzle
- Start the pork about an hour before you want to go to bed. Heat the oven to its highest setting. Put the pork in a roasting tin and rub the skin with a little olive oil. Rub lots of sea salt flakes into the score lines, then roast for 30 minutes to crackle the skin and brown the meat.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl mix the gochujang, soy, ginger, garlic and honey to make a marinade. Once the pork has had its sizzle time, turn down the oven to 130°C/110°C fan/gas ¾. Remove the pork from the tin and pour away any excess fat/oil. Put the carrots and spring onions in the tin and put the pork on top. Using a pastry brush, liberally cover the meat, but not the skin, with the gochujang marinade, then pour any leftover marinade around the sides of the meat. Add the star anise, cinnamon stick and stock to the tin, then sprinkle the fennel seeds over the pork skin. Cover the tin with 2 sheets of foil, seal the edges well, then slow-cook for 8-12 hours.
- Check the pork after 8 hours or so. When it’s ready the meat will easily pull apart into strands using a fork. Remove the meat from the oven and allow to cool slightly. Shred the meat (discard the carrots and spring onions), then mix the shredded meat with the cooking juices. Taste, adding more soy sauce if needed. If eating soon, turn the oven to low, cover the roasting tin again with the foil and keep warm until ready to serve.
- To make the pancakes, put the flour in a mixing bowl and whisk in the eggs and stock until combined, then stir in the cabbage, carrots, ginger, sesame oil and some ground black pepper.
- Heat a teaspoon of the vegetable oil in a 18-20cm non-stick frying pan and pour in one sixth of the mixture, spreading it in the pan to make an even pancake. Cook for 3-4 minutes, then use a fish slice/spatula to turn and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Put on a baking tray lined with non-stick paper, cover loosely with foil and keep warm in the oven while you cook the rest of the pancakes.
- To serve, put the mayo in a serving bowl and stir in the miso, then top with the ginger and coriander. Serve the warm pancakes topped with the pork, drizzled with the mayonnaise, sriracha sauce and a scattering of coriander.
For the best crackling, leave the pork uncovered in the fridge (on the bottom shelf, away from food to be eaten uncooked) during the day to dry out. If you don’t want crackling, start the pork off on a high heat (step 1) for just 10 minutes to sear, then turn the heat down and slow-cook as in the recipe.
You need to start this recipe the night before you want to eat it. You can cook the pork ahead, cover and chill for 2-3 days, then reheat until piping hot to serve.
Gochujang is a sticky, spicy, slightly sweet Korean paste made from red peppers, fermented soybeans and glutinous rice. It’s used as a marinade and a sauce ingredient. Pickled sushi ginger is the thin (often pink) wafer-thin stuff served with sushi. Both are available from Asian grocers and online at souschef.co.uk.
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