36-hour sous vide Chashu

I have been meaning to make a proper Chashu for a long time. Until now I have just used pork tenderloin, chicken, beef steak or ground pork thrown into the sous-vide with some garlic, ginger, honey and soy sauce. This was mainly due to my laziness, as there is only 1 proper butcher near where I live and the super markets rarely have pork belly in stock. Recently one of my local supermarkets has started stocking all sorts of cuts of meat, stock bones, pork fat, all the good stuff you need to make a proper bowl of ramen.

Anyway, I'm going to keep this short and sweet. This is basically a mix of two recipes, the first, I used the ingredients common to nearly every Chashu recipe that you will find online. The second I used the technique of a 36hr sous-vide and deep fry from a recipe on Serious Eats.

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  • Pork belly (Long enough so you can roll it.)
  • 240ml [1 cup] cooking sake
  • 240ml [1 cup] mirin
  • 120ml [1 cup] dark soy sauce
  • 6 to 8 garlic cloves (smashed)
  • Ginger (3" piece sliced)
  • 4 spring onions (roughly chopped)
  • 120ml [1/2 cup] dark honey
  • 2tbs sesame oil


You are going to need some cotton twine to tie the pork into a roll.

  1. Roll the port belly into as tightly as you can. It helps to get some assistance when tying the string around the rolled up pork. Start by looping around the middle of the roll and tying a double knot. After that, wind the string around the roll many times and secure with another double knot.
  1. Take the rest of the ingredients and the pork and put them into a vacuum bag and seal it with a vacuum sealer. If you don't have one of these handy machines you can just use a large ziplock bag and immerse it in water to push all the air out before zipping it closed.
  1. Set the sous-vide to 63.3 Celsius (146 Fahrenheit), wait for it reach temperature and place the bag into the water and wait 36 hours.
  1. When the 36 hours are up remove the bag, open it and pour the contents into a container and place the pork belly sitting in the liquid. Chill this is a sink of cold water. When cool, cover with plastic wrap and place it in the fridge for a few hours until it is totally cooled down and set.
  1. Once the pork belly is totally cool add about 1/2 of vegetable oil to a frying pan or wok. Set to a medium high heat and wait for the oil to heat up. Once the pan is hot, place the pork belly into the pan. It should start sizzling straight away. Tilt the pan and with a spoon, keep basting the top of the pork belly with the hot oil. I did this and a mix of rolling the pork around in the pan to fry it on all sides. This process should only take a few minutes before it turns a dark colour and the gelatinous skin becomes sticky and caramelised. Remove it from the pan and allow it to cool down. The end result should look something like the photo below.
The Final Products