Chinese Slow Cook Pork Shoulder with Five Spice Sauce

I really wanted to go for a walk this Saturday, but we got a call to say a long awaited item was finally being delivered, as usual they promised the morning , but morning means anytime between 9am and 2pm. Determined not to be my usual grumpy self I decided it would give me a chance for some attentive slow cooking

Though this recipe takes a really long time,  the results are definitely worth it , spicy caramalised pieces on the outside of the joint of  tender melting pork that falls apart dipped in spicy unami sauce . In fact definitely hide any lefover or you will find yourself dipping pork into sauce straight from the pan or fridge. Any leftovers that do make it through can be added to weekday stirfrys or noodles soups making this a great alternative to a traditional roast.

Update or use to make Char sui bau – Spiced Pork Buns

Chinese Slow Cook Pork Shoulder with Five Spice Sauce

1 boneless pork shoulder  about 1kg , fat and rind removed ( you can make Pork Scratchings)
2 tbsp of thick soy sauce
3 garlic cloves finely chopped
1 thumb of ginger finely chopped
1 tbsp of dried chillli flakes
2 tbsp  of rice wine vinegar
2 tbsp of brown sugar
3 star anise
1 tsp of fennel
1/2 black pepper
1.5 pints of chicken stock boiling

To finish the sauce

3 garlic cloves
1 tbsp of rice wine vinegar
1/2 thumb of fresh ginger
4 tbsp of honey

  1. Turn the oven onto 190degC.
  2. Rub the pork shoulder all over with the soy sauce ,vinegar , sugar  ginger, fennel,  chilli and garlic.
  3. Place in a cast iron casserole pot and pour over the chicken stock.
  4. Bring to a gentle simmer , cover & place in the oven for 1 hour at 190degC.
  5. Then turn down the oven to 150degC for 3 hours
  6. Remove the pork from the juice and refridgerate the juice, so you can skim off the fat.
  7. The next steps can be done an hour before you are ready to serve
  8. The simmer the sauce until it is reduced by half and add the finishing ingredients this will ensure the most flavoursome sauce, simmer until the consistency of sticky honey.
  9. Turn the oven  to 190degC , carefully place the pork in a roasting dish the brush over with the sauce
  10. Roast for 45 minutes turning basting two or three times, very carefully the meat will be very tender at this point

To serve

  1. Pull apart the pork with a fork  and pour over the sauce.
  2. Serve with noodles and green vegetables



Spring Onions , Cabbage and Sesame Noodles

100g of dried noodles
6 Spring Onions
1/2 Green Cabbage
Toasted sesame seeds
1 tsp of rice wine vinegar
1 tsp of sesame oil

  1. Finely slice a green leafy cabbage , and spring onion
  2. Add the sesame seeds , rice wine vinegar and oil and leave for 15 minutes
  3. Pour boiling water over the noodles and simmer til soft
  4. Mix with the cabbage and serve
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29 Responses to Chinese Slow Cook Pork Shoulder with Five Spice Sauce

  1. Helen says:

    Oh. my. God. It looks so good I could bury my face in it.

  2. dynagrrl says:

    That looks delicious! The angle of my laptop made the star anise look like a spider! Very spooky, indeed!

  3. Can there actually be a better cut than a shoulder of pork for long, slow roasting?! I did a Bavarian shoulder for a rather hectic Oktoberfest reunion dinner last year and it was eye-wateringly lovely. Yours looks absolutely fab – definitely bookmarked!

  4. Kerri says:

    This looks great, I love the idea of a twist on a traditional Sunday roast and particularly love food that can be used in different ways when there are leftovers.

  5. Chris says:

    Tried this one out, but couldn’t see what to do with the vinegar and brown sugar in the main/first part of the recipe. There were no juices after four hours roasting; is 1/5pt stock enough, I ask myself? I also couldn’t find thick soy sauce. What came out of the oven tasted good anyway.

    • aldus baldus says:

      what a plonker. it’s not roasting you…

      • Chris says:

        The recipe was amended to show the correct amount of stock etc. If you followed the recipe as originally written, i.e. only 4 fl. oz of stock , the joint was effectively roasted in the casserole pot. There’s no need to call people ‘plonker’ etc. It is thanks to people trying these recipes and leaving comments that typos and other niggles get sorted out, so that people who come along 2 and a half years later get the intended outcome! I’ll accept apologies etc. ;-)

  6. Becky says:

    I’m really sorry don’t know how the /5 got in there it’s 1.5 pints of stock and the vinegar and sugar go in for the first cooking now amended the recipe. glad it worked in the end and sorry about the recipe

  7. M says:

    I was just coming to leave the EXACT same comment as Chris, we had problems with there being no sauce and not knowing when to use some of the ingredients. It still tasted good but I’m going to have another go now that the recipe has been amended.

  8. laurendempster says:

    This recipe sounds amazing! I love Chinese Five Spice and slow cooked pork is divine. Thanks for a great recipe :)

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  14. Calogero says:

    Well, the ingredients are not difficult to find :-)

  15. Joseph says:

    Doing a small twist on this right now. Smells great! BTW i tossed a lil Hoisin (sp) sauce in Soy and good turbinado cane sugar to thicken it up =)

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  19. Dollie says:

    I have a question when your referring to fennel is it the actual vegetable or the one you find in the spice isle?

    • Chris says:

      I use fennel seeds at a guess from the quantity measure. We cook this every couple of months or so, and once the measures had been sorted out, it turns out great every time!

  20. Keeno says:

    LUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUSH!!!!
    man this recipe is so good we’ve cooked it 3 times now and love it!!
    the noodles and cabbage go so well with the pork, it works so well. only problem is you have a house smelling incredible for 4 hours, so best to go out and do other things whilst it cooks to prevent you from eating your own hand off. cheers!

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  22. Simon says:

    I found your brilliant website and this recipe when I was trying to replicate a dish I had enjoyed in a gastropub. This recipe works very well, though I maybe put a few too many dried chillis in the mix. I was also a bit too generous with the honey in the finishing sauce, so much of it carbonised in the roasting tin after about 20 minutes. However by this time the pork shoulder was more or less ready (I only had a 30-minute break after the four-hour bit). We ate it with a simple stir-fry and noodles. Great recipe.

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  25. thumbs says:

    could you tell me when the star anise goes in and is it ground down first. thanks

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