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Tau Yu Bak (Braised Pork Belly in Soy Sauce)

I grew up eating this homely dish of braised pork belly in soy sauce (or locally known as “tau yu bak”/豆油肉) so this is true taste of home-cooked food to me. Deliciously savoury, this dish goes very well with rice or steamed buns (kong bak bao). Every family has a different way of cooking this dish.

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My family’s version is no fuss – just one type of soy sauce (dark) and no need to grind the spices. The recipe is also very forgiving and flexible so you can always “rescue” it if something goes wrong. Do not overdose on the spices (like star anise, cinnamon) because a little goes a long way.

Braised Pork Belly in Soy Sauce Recipe

Browning the pork belly (optional but highly recommended) adds additional flavour to the stew.

Braised Pork Belly in Soy Sauce Recipe

Aromatics for cooking tau yu bak – garlic, 5-spice powder, cinnamon, cloves, star anise and rock sugar.

Braised Pork Belly in Soy Sauce Recipe

I re-created the dish from memory of the taste and I let my mum taste test the dish. Her verdict – my tau yu bak was good, and she liked that the sauce is just the right amount (if too much, the stew is diluted; too little will result in insufficient gravy for the rice & meat).

Braised Pork Belly in Soy Sauce Recipe

120 comments on “Tau Yu Bak (Braised Pork Belly in Soy Sauce)”

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  3. Hi, can I know which brand of tau yu (dark soy sauce) you strongly recommend?

    • There’s no brand that I highly recommend (have not tried that many), but personally I have been using Tai Hua superior dark and light soy sauces all these years.

    • Hello, I have recently thrown away a bottle of dark soy sauce, but when I was shopping for a new one, I cannot remember if it’s a Taihua dark soy sauce or Superior dark soy sauce. Can u advise me? I usually use it to cook beehoon and fried rice. Thanks..

    • I personally use Taihua superior dark and light soy sauce. But you can use any brand you like :)

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  5. Hello, can I check with you if it’s okay to substitute the pork belly with chicken meat instead? If yes, is there anything else I need to add on to it?

  6. The recipe is so easy to follow and the dish is so delicious and appetizing…my husband and I enjoyed it a lot. The lengthy braising of the pork belly is worth waiting for as it’s tasty and very tender!!!

  7. Do you know, is this the Teochew or Hokkien recipe?

    And is there any difference between the two if you know?

    Thank you!

  8. Hi, wonder how much rock sugar you put in, thanks

  9. Hi wiffy! How long can u keep the leftovers for?

  10. hi, can I cook this in a slow cooker?

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