Star Anise Braised Pork Belly and with quail eggs (Thit Heo Kho Hoa Hoi), which translates for us to:  pork, pork fat drippings and caramel sauce.


Ingrid sent us an email last week announcing that Anthony would be hitting Vietnam on Monday night and that it would be the last show of the season!  We knew we had to go along …..

This was the best excuse to make some Vietnamese food as I have been itching to try this recipe that Diane and Todd made recently, Star Anise Braised Pork Belly and quail eggs (Thit Heo Kho Hoa Hoi).  Think about it, one cannot go wrong with Pork, some pork fat drippings and caramel sauce!   As well, we knew from Anthony’s last trip to the Philippines, that he loves Pork!


We started the evening with some veggie spring rolls.  We love these little morsels, either as an appetizer or even a light main course.  They are incredibly easy to make and you can use so many different options when filling them.    I served them with a spicy Nuoc Cham sauce I found in the newest addition of Donna Hay.

Then we moved onto the main attraction, the Pork Belly (butt in this case) with quail eggs (chicken this time).  I love this recipe as it was so complex by using the cinnamon (we used the Viet cinnamon bark), black peppercorns, and star anise.  It was such an interesting combination, slightly spicy (pepper) and it had this crazy depth to it, I don’t cook with Star Anise that often but I am thinking that is what added this layer.  The caramel made it slightly sweet.  I was not going to serve with the eggs (I am not a hard boil egged fan) but then, Lenny, thought I was crazy for not following Diane’s suggestions.  I served it with rice noodles and a light cucumber salad (a Donna recipe).  It was very good …..


Recipe for the Pork here.


Nuoc Cham

1/4 cup fish sauce

1/4 cup caster sugar

1 tablespoon water

1/8 cup lime juice

1 clove garlic minced

2 small red chillies, sliced thinly

Place the fish sauce, sugar, water, lime juice, garlic and chili in a non-metallic bowl and stir until the sugar is dissolved.  keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

Pickled Cucumber Salad

2 tablespoons caster sugar

1/4 cup lime juice

1/4 cup rice vinegar

1 cucumber, thinly sliced

Place the sugar, lime juice and vinegar in a non-metallic bowl and stir until dissolved.  Add the cucumber and toss well to coat.  Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.  Makes 2 cups.

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