Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Shredded Pork Mantou Sandwich Buns

I enjoy many cuisines, and lately my cooking had steered toward Hawaiian cuisine. This is often persuaded by which cookbook(s) I am reading. One of the many cookbooks I've been enjoying lately is by chef Sam Choy (the guru that made spam and char siew fried rice better known to mainland Americans, and also widely popular for home cooks in South-East Asia). This is one of his recipes that used the home-friendly oven to roast Hawaiian pork instead of an imu (underground oven using coals and sand), and I love this as a shredded pork dish for my little mantau (chinese steamed buns) sandwiches. I also made this with some vegetables for the asian women's meeting last weekend, and had compliments for this dish. Some of the ladies had asked for the recipe, so I'm sharing it here. The traditional way of serving this is with sweet potatoes and poi (mashed taro root). I adapted his recipe and this serves 6-8. The original recipe also appeared in Bon Appetit.

7 lb boneless pork butt
3-4 tablespoons Hawaiian alaea sea salt
2 tbs light soy sauce
4-5 frozen banana leaves, thawed and rinsed
6-8 cups water

1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke

Set the oven at 350F. Cut 1/4-inch-deep slits 1 inch apart all over pork roast. Rub 2 tablespoons sea salt and light soy sauce all over pork. Rinse and towel dry banana leaves. Unfold 1 or 2 banana leaf on work surface and place pork roast atop leaf. Fold up leaf around pork, enclosing completely. Repeat wrapping pork in remaining 2 banana leaves.

Tie securely with kitchen string, then wrap roast in foil. Make sure to wrap foil securely so that you save some of the juice from the roast. Place pork in roasting pan and pour about 4 cups water into pan..Roast pork in oven until very tender when pierced with fork, about 5 hours. You may have to add more hot water to the water-bath once or twice during the cooking process. After cooking, wait a few mins. and carefully remove the roasting pan from the oven.

Unwrap pork and cool slightly. Shred pork and place in large bowl. Pour the juices into a gravy separator to remove fat. Bring remaining 2 cups water and remaining 2 teaspoons salt to boil in saucepan. Add the juices from the roast. Add liquid smoke, and pour over pork and stir to blend. Let stand 10 minutes to allow liquid to flavor pork. Serve

Note: I have done this once without using the banana leaves, and it came out fine. Great with a green salad and/or cucumbers as sides. In the picture above, I prepared this recipe with steamed plain Chinese mantou buns as a fun delicious sandwich for this pork dish and my keiki loved it. I added some green onions and red peppers in mine for an extra crunch.
I have also read somewhere (I think it's one of the forums) that you can use a oven bag to cook the pork in and I intend to try that next time I make this.Here's a shot from the asian women's meeting last weekend. I didn't get many shots as my flash wasn't working properly that day. The famous Lily Ng was present with her freshly baked pastry and A.Y. brought her tasty assam fish and biryani. J.K. brought some beautiful sausage rolls, S.H brought sweet kuih dadar and P.K. brought a nice, dark, spicy chicken dish. E.W. brought yummy meatballs, and J.H. brought her very spicy chicken curry. There were many more, but I can't recall who brought what though. I finally got to chat with some old friends and met some new ones. Didn't cook much myself except for a chicken drumstick curry dish, basmati rice, Hawaiian pork with veggies, bubur hitam (that I inevitably forgot to stir in all the excitement), and some mini cocktail sausages. All the ladies brought wonderful feast for the potluck and I thought everyone had a great time.


Big Boys Oven said...

hmmm love the you have the bun's recipe? hehehehe

hey I just had my full list of my cake menu,please click, click

Padma said...

Hey you got an award, check my blog :)

Cris said...

How wonderful and fun!!! The dish and the get together, this really builds up strong relationships. I enjoyed get togethers like this when we lived there so much.

Little Corner of Mine said...

I love your presentation! The red bell pepper and scallion really brought color to this otherwise plain looking dish! Looks delish!

Anonymous said...

Yummy, I hear a lot of asian food in your meeting. Lucky u!

Like your pulled pork mantau...lovely. Can you dance the hula at the same time? :p

wonda said...

Don't have the salt and banana leaves nor the mantou. But I wanna eat. How?

SIG said...

Hi, just dropping by to say thanks for visiting me. You've got lovely girls there. ;) I just saw those baos in the market yesterday and felt like buying them but wondering what to do with them. Good idea yours. Looks good. :)

Beau Lotus 涟 said...

Wow, what a feast! Sooo lucky...and you get to meet Lily!!! I'm a fan...all my respects.

Cynthia said...

Okay, I'm moving to your neck of the woods so that we can be neighbours and learn from you. Love, love, love your shredded pork buns.

East Meets West Kitchen said...

Hi Big Boys Oven,
Haha! Yes I do! But this time I bought frozen ones leh. hehehe!
OK, I'm hopping over next to see your menu!

Hi Padma,
Wow Wow Padma! Hopping over next! Thanks in advance!

Hi Cris,
Thanks! It was fun, and I've been missing out on alot of those get-togethers.

Hey C,
Thanks! I had fun plating and eating this one! :)

Hi Tigerfish,
Yes there was.
Sure I can do the hula and have the coconut shells too! hahaha!

Hi Alice,
Can come over? hehe!

Hi Singairishgirl,
Thanks for dropping by too!
I love mantous and often use it with my meal. Hope you get to experiment too. :)

Hi Beau lotus,
Thanks! Lily is a great friend and she's my idol too.

Hi Cynthia,
Haha! I can't wait for you to move over so YOU can teach me! And we'll have lots of high tea...YAY!

Unknown said...

i am taking this opportunity to thank you for being such a gracious host. I enjoyed every bit of my time at the potluck - who won't? with such a hospital host and a group of my most treasured friends.

thanks again for opening your house to us.

hi to the girls and hubby too

East Meets West Kitchen said...

Hi Auntie Lily,
Thank you for your company and for bringing the tasty pastry. It's always a pleasure to see you and I wish we live closer. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi V,
I made the pulled pork today and it turned out great. Thank you and hope all is well with you!

East Meets West Kitchen said...

Hi June,
Glad you enjoyed it! I just love this recipe, and it's so good on mantous too.