Mother claimed that she made this for us when we were young. She made use of restaurant-bought roast pork and salted fish, stir-fried and braised with soy sauce and whole chilies. Pork and salted fish, might be all Chinese’ favorite food item. I was utmost surprised when I met a Chinese doctor who doesn’t like salted fish. ┬áHe said it is the most unhygienic food ever made. Then I decided I didn’t like him all that much either. Since what he said is the truth, it is wiser to soak salted fish in cold water prior to using.

On the other main ingredient in this dish, I am now convinced that store-bought roast pork is a great freezer item. Buy the best quality roast pork belly from the best restaurant or grocer, cut them up into manageable chunks. Slide them into individual plastic bags and freeze them to your heart content. When you feel like whipping up Chinese dishes such as this one, or sour soup with mustard cabbage, or any other dishes, just take out a piece of roast pork and let thawed before using.

Ginger, shallot, garlic, chilies and Thai bird’s eye chilies. Feel free to use less chilies.

Cut up some thick-meat salted fish after soaking the bigger piece in cold water for a couple of minutes. Cut roast pork same size as the salted fish.

Deep-fry salted fish in hot oil till crunchy and golden. Toss in ginger into the oil as well.

Season with salt.

Toss in fried salted fish and roast pork.

Squirt some soy sauce into the wok.

And some kecap manis.

The color should be caramel-brownish.

Remove from wok into a claypot (or small stockpot).

Add water into the pot.

Slowly simmer for another hour. Adding more water if necessary. Serve with warm steamed rice.


Braised roast pork and salted fish

Makes 4 servings


350 g roast pork, cut into 1 cm thickness
150 g salted fish, cut into small pieces and deep-fried
3 shallots, sliced
4 garlic cloves, lightly bruised
20 g ginger, sliced
20 g red chilies
20 g Thai bird's eye chili
1/2 tbsp salt
3 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp kecap manis / Chinese dark soy sauce
1 cup water
1/4 cup cooking oil, more for deep-frying salted fish


Heat cooking oil in a wok over medium heat. Add chilies, shallot, garlic and ginger. Cook for a couple of minutes till fragrant. Add salt.
Toss in salted fish and roast pork. Stir-fry for another minute.
Season with soy sauce and kecap manis. Mix well.
Remove the dish from wok into a clay pot or small stock pot.
Add water and braise over low heat for 15 minutes.
Remove from heat and serve warm with rice.

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14 Responses to “Braised Roast Pork and Salted Fish”

  1. 1

    Min {Honest Vanilla} — March 27, 2011 @ 6:50 am

    I like your story about the doctor, made me laughed :) This looks incredibly yummy!

  2. 2

    Christine — March 27, 2011 @ 11:14 am

    Haha I think by now our immune system is strong enough to consume salted fish. It’s my all time favorite ingredients. Unfortunately, it’s pricey here.

  3. 3

    TourDeFoodBlog — March 27, 2011 @ 12:00 pm

    This looks yummy! But I’m quite surprised as to the amount of salted fish you put in this— is it REALLY salty? The one we have in Thailand is, and a small bit of the fish should suffice for the whole portion!

    Roast pork belly = divine. Oh dear.

  4. 4

    daphne — March 28, 2011 @ 4:01 am

    oh sooo good. Well, I think there are so many other ‘types” of germs and bacterial that whatever is in the salted fish will not hurt us. Besides, the salt will kill everything… so i like to believe!

    ps- i do the same in freezing some roast pork for a “rainy day”. It’s such a versatile meat!

  5. 5

    Laura — March 28, 2011 @ 9:40 pm

    I would give a lot to have someone make this for me. Not least of which because I have no idea where I would find the roast pork where I live.

    Your story about the doctor cracked me up. Is the salted fish the same as a Spanish salt cod? Could I just use that or is the Chinese version really different? The minute you added the keycap manis I knew it was good. I could lick that stuff of a car bumper!

    PS your comment about using less chile peppers also cracked me up. You had enough on that plate to give most Americans a heart attack, although I bet my sister could have eaten them.

  6. 6

    noobcook — March 28, 2011 @ 10:33 pm

    It must be so addicting to eat this dish with rice. Totally love roast pork and to pair it with salted fish is just wicked good!

  7. 7

    dinewithleny — March 29, 2011 @ 4:10 am

    i actually made sth similar yesterday. my mom taught me how to make it, we actually just use pork pieces and stir fry with ginger, chilli and the 2 soysauce and steam d whole thing with deep fried salted fish after stir frying. try it with indomie kaldu ayam and sum blueband. not d soup type but dry version. mom’s best creation so far …=)

  8. 8

    chrysta — March 29, 2011 @ 9:59 am

    You take such incredibly gorgeous photos. Truly! I am such a fan. They show case the food wonderfully and you have such incredible recipes to go along with it!

  9. 9

    LaToya S. — March 30, 2011 @ 4:00 am

    All of your recipes make me hungry. I have never cooked with salt fish. I know our regular grocery stores don’t carry it, and I don’t know where else I should look. Sounds delicious though!

  10. 10

    Kankana — March 30, 2011 @ 6:14 pm

    First time in your blog :) and I am loving your space. Beautiful display of recipes you have here ! Following you in twitter.

  11. 11

    Yi @ Yi Reservation — April 11, 2011 @ 8:59 pm

    Not a great fan of salted fish but I’d try anything with roasted pork. Thanks for sharing!

  12. 12

    minneville — April 14, 2011 @ 11:12 pm

    Salted fish is my all time favorites! It’s great you have step by step pictures!

  13. 13

    Jean (Lemons and Anchovies) — May 22, 2011 @ 8:53 pm

    I’ve just had dinner and now I’m having ice cream but the latter can’t compete with the appeal of this dish. I can’t stop looking at your top photo. I don’t think I’ve ever had salted fish this way but I’d love to try it with the roast pork. This dish looks so vibrant and full of flavor, I would love to try it. :-)

  14. 14

    Yenny — March 7, 2013 @ 12:20 am

    Hi, just wanna say THANK YOU! for sharing your recipes. Love your photos, and all the details! Seriously.. :) This what I’ve been looking for..

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