Chashu is easily the most popular topping for ramen. Pork (usually belly) is simmered in a sweetened soy-based broth, then chilled, sliced and often grilled. This recipe shows three different styles of chashu cooked together, but of course you could just pick one style and focus on that.
- 1 kg pork belly, rolled
- 1 kg pork belly, unrolled
- 1 kg pork neck, untied
- 1 piece kombu
- 6 shiitake mushrooms
- 1 tsp salt
- 100 g sugar
- 150 ml soy sauce
- 100 ml dark soy sauce
- 125 ml mirin
- 125 ml sake
- Tie the pork belly in a roll. Place into pot, cover cold water and bring to a boil. Simmer for 20 minutes.
- Remove the pork from the water and rinse well under running water. Rinse the pot and remove any scum.
- Return the pork to the clean pot and add the kombu and shiitake mushrooms. Add water to cover, then bring to the boil, removing the kombu when the water starts to steam. Add the sugar and salt, reduce to a simmer and add a drop lid. Simmer covered for 1 hour, then add the soy sauce, mirin and sake. Simmer for a further hour.
- Remove the unrolled pork belly after 90 minutes total simmering time. And the pork neck and rolled pork belly after 2 hours. Refrigerate overnight until well chilled. Slice and serve.
- Don't skip the chilling process. The chashu is very soft when cooked and will easily break apart if sliced while warm.
- You can play around with the proportions for this recipe to suit your taste, or the style of ramen you are wanting to make.
- Don't discard the simmering liquid. It can be used to make ramen eggs (ajitama) or braising other meats.