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Bite into Fusion: Chinese Pork Burger Recipe for Culinary Adventurers

If you're looking for a delicious and filling meal that's easy to make, you should try making a Chinese pork burger, also known as Rou Jia Mo. This tasty street food originated in Xi'an, the capital city of Shaanxi Province in China, and has since become popular all over the world. The dish consists of a simple pan-baked flatbread stuffed with spiced pork belly, fresh coriander, and chili, making it tangy, flavorful, moist, and extremely comforting.

A sizzling pork patty is being grilled on a hot pan, surrounded by aromatic spices and seasonings. A fluffy burger bun is being toasted nearby, ready to be filled with the mouthwatering pork patty

Making a Chinese pork burger is relatively easy, and you can customize the recipe to suit your taste preferences. You'll need to prepare the pork belly by marinating it in a mixture of soy sauce, hoisin sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger, and spices like cumin and chili powder. Then, you'll need to make the dough for the flatbread, which consists of flour, water, yeast, sugar, vegetable oil, and a pinch of salt. Once you've made the dough, you'll need to let it rest for about an hour before rolling it out and cooking it in a pan.

Making a Chinese pork burger is a fun and delicious way to enjoy a classic street food dish from Xi'an. You can experiment with different fillings and spices to create your own unique version of this tasty meal. Whether you're cooking for yourself or for a group of friends, this recipe is sure to be a hit.

Key Takeaways

  • Chinese pork burgers are a popular street food dish that originated in Xi'an, China.
  • The dish consists of a simple pan-baked flatbread stuffed with spiced pork belly, fresh coriander, and chili.
  • To make a Chinese pork burger, you'll need to prepare the pork belly, make the dough for the flatbread, and cook the flatbread in a pan.

Ingredients and Substitutions

A kitchen counter with ingredients like ground pork, soy sauce, ginger, and buns. Possible substitutes like turkey or tofu are nearby

When it comes to making Chinese pork burgers, there are several primary ingredients that you'll need to have on hand. These include pork belly, which is the traditional cut of meat used in this dish, as well as ginger, garlic, and Sichuan peppercorns. You'll also need some spices like cloves, star anise, and Chinese five spice, which will give your burgers their characteristic flavour.

Primary Ingredients

  • Pork belly: This is the main ingredient in Chinese pork burgers, and it's what gives them their rich, meaty flavour. If you can't find pork belly, you can substitute it with ground pork or braised meat.
  • Ginger and garlic: These two ingredients are used to add depth and complexity to the flavour of the pork. You can use fresh or dried ginger and garlic depending on your preference.
  • Sichuan peppercorns: These are a key ingredient in many Chinese dishes, and they add a unique, numbing flavour to the pork.

Sauce and Seasoning

In addition to the primary ingredients, you'll also need some sauce and seasoning to give your burgers their signature taste. Here are some of the key ingredients you'll need:

  • Soy sauce: This is a staple ingredient in Chinese cooking, and it adds a salty, umami flavour to the pork.
  • Dark soy sauce: This is a thicker, sweeter soy sauce that is used to add depth and colour to the pork.
  • Shaoxing wine: This is a type of Chinese cooking wine that is used to add flavour and aroma to the pork.
  • Rock sugar: This is a type of sugar that is commonly used in Chinese cooking. It has a milder flavour than regular sugar and adds a subtle sweetness to the pork.
  • Chinese five spice: This is a blend of spices that includes cinnamon, cloves, fennel seeds, star anise, and Sichuan peppercorns. It's used to add flavour and complexity to the pork.

Bread Options

Finally, you'll need some type of bread to serve your pork burgers on. The traditional bread used in Chinese pork burgers is a chewy, steamed bun called a bao bun. However, you can also use other types of bread like hamburger buns or flatbreads.

  • Bao buns: These are soft, pillowy buns that are perfect for holding the pork and all of its toppings. You can find them at most Asian grocery stores, or you can make your own.
  • Hamburger buns: If you can't find bao buns, you can use regular hamburger buns as a substitute. They won't have the same texture as bao buns, but they'll still work well.
  • Flatbreads: Another option is to use a flatbread like naan or pita bread. This will give your pork burgers a different texture and flavour, but it can still be delicious.

Preparing the Pork

A chef marinates pork with soy sauce, ginger, and garlic. On a grill, the meat sizzles and browns. Meanwhile, buns are toasted, and a colorful array of toppings is prepared

If you're planning to make Chinese pork burgers, the first step is to prepare the pork. Here are the steps you need to follow:

Marinating the Meat

To get the best flavour, marinate the pork belly in a mixture of soy sauce, dark soy sauce, sugar, cooking wine, star anise, bay leaves, cinnamon stick, cloves, ginger, and garlic. Mix the ingredients in a bowl and coat the pork belly well. Cover the bowl with cling film and leave it in the fridge for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Braising Techniques

After marinating, braise the pork belly in a pot of boiling water. Add some ginger and cooking wine to the pot to get rid of any unwanted smell. Boil the pork belly for about 30 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 75°C. This will ensure that the pork is cooked through. Once done, remove the pork belly from the pot and let it cool down.

Shredding and Chopping

Once the pork belly is cool, shred it into thin strips using a fork or chop it into small pieces. You can also use a meat grinder to grind the pork into a fine mince. Add some of the braising liquid to the meat to keep it moist.

Now that you have prepared the pork, you can move on to making the flatbread and assembling the burgers.

Making the Dough

A pair of hands mixing flour, ground pork, and spices in a large bowl to make the dough for Chinese pork burgers

To make the perfect Chinese pork burger, you need to start with the perfect dough. Here's how you can make it at home.

Kneading the Dough

First, combine 500g of all-purpose flour with 1 tsp of salt in a large mixing bowl. Then, add 1 tsp of dried instant yeast and mix well. Slowly add 250ml of warm water to the mixture while stirring with a wooden spoon. Once the dough starts to come together, use your hands to knead it for about 10 minutes until it becomes smooth and elastic.

Pro tip: If the dough is too dry, add a little more water. If it's too wet, add a little more flour.

Proofing with Yeast

After kneading the dough, form it into a ball and place it in a lightly oiled bowl. Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and let it rest in a warm, draft-free place for about an hour or until it doubles in size. This process is called proofing and it allows the yeast to ferment and produce carbon dioxide, which makes the dough rise.

Pro tip: If you're in a hurry, you can proof the dough in a warm oven (around 35°C) for about 30 minutes.

Once the dough has proofed, punch it down to release any air pockets and knead it again for a few minutes. Your dough is now ready to be divided into portions and rolled out into flatbreads for your Chinese pork burgers.

By following these simple steps, you can make the perfect dough for your Chinese pork burgers. Remember to use high-quality ingredients and take your time when kneading and proofing the dough for the best results.

Cooking Techniques

A hand mixing ground pork, soy sauce, ginger, and garlic in a bowl. Another hand forming the mixture into burger patties on a cutting board

Assembling the Burger

To assemble your Chinese pork burger, you will need a hamburger bun or bread of your choice. Cut the bun in half and toast it lightly. Then, add your cooked pork patty, along with any additional toppings such as lettuce, cucumber, or coriander.

Using Skillet or Grill

You can cook your pork patty on a skillet or grill. Using a skillet will give your pork patty a crispy exterior and a juicy interior. Preheat your skillet over medium-high heat and add a small amount of cooking oil. Cook your pork patty for about 3-4 minutes on each side until it is cooked through.

Alternatively, you can use a grill to cook your pork patty. Preheat your grill to medium-high heat and brush it with cooking oil. Cook your pork patty for about 3-4 minutes on each side until it is cooked through.

Frying Pan Tips

If you prefer to use a frying pan, make sure to use a non-stick pan to prevent the pork patty from sticking. Preheat your frying pan over medium-high heat and add a small amount of cooking oil. Cook your pork patty for about 3-4 minutes on each side until it is cooked through.

When cooking your pork patty, make sure to use a meat thermometer to ensure that it is cooked to an internal temperature of 71°C. This will ensure that your pork patty is safe to eat.

Experiment with different cooking techniques to find the one that works best for you. Whether you choose to use a skillet, grill, or frying pan, your Chinese pork burger is sure to be a delicious and satisfying meal.

Serving and Garnish

A plate holds a Chinese pork burger with a sesame seed bun, topped with fresh lettuce, sliced cucumbers, and a drizzle of hoisin sauce

Plating Suggestions

When it comes to serving your Chinese pork burger, there are a few different options. One popular method is to simply place the burger on a plate and serve it alongside some crispy fries or a side salad. Alternatively, you could serve the burger on a bed of rice or noodles for a more substantial meal.

If you're feeling creative, you could even try serving your pork burger in a steamed bun, like a traditional Chinese bao. Simply slice the bun in half, add your burger patty and any additional toppings, and enjoy!

Garnish Varieties

To elevate the flavour profile of your Chinese pork burger, consider adding some fresh garnishes. Chopped cilantro, also known as coriander, is a classic choice that pairs well with the tangy flavours of the pork. Alternatively, you could try adding some sliced scallions or green onions for a subtle onion flavour.

Lettuce is another great option that adds a refreshing crunch to your burger. Simply place a few leaves on top of your patty before adding any additional toppings or sauce. Speaking of sauce, don't forget to drizzle some of your favourite Chinese sauce on top of your burger for an extra burst of flavour.

To conclude, there are plenty of ways to garnish and serve your Chinese pork burger. Whether you prefer a classic approach or something a bit more creative, the possibilities are endless!

Frequently Asked Questions

A chef grills juicy pork patties, as he carefully assembles them with fresh vegetables and a fluffy bun, creating a mouthwatering Chinese pork burger

How do you make a simple pork burger at home?

To make a simple pork burger at home, you will need ground pork, salt, pepper and any additional seasonings of your choice. Mix the ingredients together in a bowl, form the mixture into patties, and cook them on a grill or in a frying pan until they are cooked through.

What's the secret to the best Chinese-style pork burger?

The secret to the best Chinese-style pork burger is to use a combination of spices and seasonings that are commonly used in Chinese cuisine. For example, you can add soy sauce, Chinese five spice powder, garlic, and ginger to the pork mixture to give it a delicious and authentic flavour.

Can you cook a Chinese pork burger in a slow cooker?

While it is possible to cook Chinese pork burgers in a slow cooker, it is not recommended as it may result in the burgers becoming too soft and losing their texture. It is best to cook them on a grill or in a frying pan for the best results.

What kind of bread is typically used for Chinese burgers?

The bread typically used for Chinese burgers is called "mo" or "mantou", which is a type of steamed bun made from flour, water, and yeast. However, you can also use any other type of bun or bread that you prefer.

What are some tasty toppings for Asian pork burgers?

Some tasty toppings for Asian pork burgers include sliced cucumbers, pickled vegetables, fresh cilantro, and hoisin sauce. You can also add a fried egg or some spicy mayo for an extra kick of flavour.

Are there any healthier alternatives to traditional pork burgers?

Yes, there are several healthier alternatives to traditional pork burgers. You can use lean ground pork or turkey instead of regular ground pork, and add plenty of vegetables and herbs to the mixture for added nutrition and flavour. You can also serve the burgers on a bed of lettuce instead of bread for a low-carb option.