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Today's special: Buta no Kakuni

Saturday, September 19, 2009 - 11:44 am     English  |  日本語

Ugh. I’m stressed, with pretty much everything that’s happening right now. And I just want to ask why the hell my wisdom tooth needed to decide to hurt all of a sudden. These tooth will be take out in 2 weeks. So please excuse me for slow in response to your comments left here + less updates.


I guess this would be the last dish before this summer, to use my pressure cooker. Lorraine (Not Quite Nigella) asked me in her comment if I’d use the pressure cooker during the summer, which made me wonder what I could use this for. Of course exception of stews/braised dishes that are perfect for winter time. I could use it for mainly preparation process just to speed up cooking time for potato and carrots, but I was unable to come up with anything entirely cooked and finished in it. It’d just be too hot for summer wouldn’t it.. Any suggestions??

Today’s Yas’ special on the blackboard is Buta no Kakuni (豚の角煮) the Japanese braised pork belly. Historically it was introduced to Okinawa Japan from China as 東坡肉, then brought over to Kyushu region. The arranged version became the Kakuni today. I guess they look very similar, just taste differently as Kakuni doesn’t use common Chinese spices like star anises or five-spice powder. It rather tastes like something between a thick ramen soup and Teriyaki.

And yes, I cooked this late at night again, but there’s a rule – “let the kakuni marinated overnight.” Surprised to see me patiently waited?


FAT LAYERS. What’s not to like about it.

Cut the pork belly into thick rectangles – be sure to cut bigger than you want as they will shrink quite a lot. Place them into a pressure cooker with water and 2 green onions (no need to cut) and a small piece of peeled ginger, and cook for 15 mins.

Then skim the broth, add soy sauce, sake, mirin, sugar into the cooker. Cook for another 20 mins. Kakuni came out really nice and tender, again, so soft that they easily cut only with chopsticks! (that means, it was extremely hard for me to put on the plate for the picture..)

It goes really well with a beer – which I’m currently off. I wish I had buns to wrap this in and steam.

If you know any good dishes for summer that pressure cooker can be great for, let me know 😉


11 comments for “Today's special: Buta no Kakuni”

  1. looks like you did a great job of it. i think i’d eat pork anytime of the year. :-)

    Posted by Simon Food Favourties | September 19, 2009, 12:30 pm
  2. oh…i love the fatty bit of 東坡肉:-)

    Posted by chinesechic | September 19, 2009, 9:47 pm
  3. Oooh look at those fat layers!! How good do they look? *drools* Oh i hope you recover well from your wisdom tooth! Mine came up but then I think it’s gone back down again. Strange little buggers! Lots of ice cream and ice ok?

    Posted by Lorraine @ Not Quite Nigella | September 20, 2009, 12:13 am
  4. Ooh, these do look good!! I’ve no idea what to cook in a pressure cooker in summer! You could use it for storage. Hehe. Oh, hope everything with your wisdom tooth goes smoothly :)

    Posted by Betty | September 20, 2009, 10:17 am
  5. ive been eyeing your site for a while its always made me crave certain foods.

    Couldnt help eyeing the pork belly! and the fact that you marinated it omggg i can imagine what it would taste like.

    How late did you cook this? i have the image u cooked this 11:30pm at night?!?!

    Posted by Leona | September 21, 2009, 12:05 pm
  6. hmmmm, this is at drool factor 10. I love soft tender fall apart pork belly. The fat layers are the best. I would savor every morsel, and never share!

    Posted by Maria@TheGourmetChallenge | September 21, 2009, 4:16 pm
  7. OH EM GEE!!!! I want to visit Yas’ late night MEATHOUSE!

    Posted by FFichiban | September 22, 2009, 10:29 pm
  8. @Simon Food Favourites
    Hehehe me too, actually Kakuni goes well with cold beers!

    I love the chinese one tooooo! Fat layers – I love them too much.

    Ohh mine’s been back and forth for a few years – now seriously taking care of it once for all!

    Hahaha storage idea is good LOL Aww I had never thought myself looking forward to visiting dentist.. I don’t like them, but I can’t wait to get rid of the tooth soon! no more throbbing pain!

    Thanks Leona! :) Oh the Kakuni turned out really nice – full of flavour and of course cholesterol. Guilty pleasure that is!

    Hahaha totally! Why the fat must taste so good that we can’t resist… (and nope, I didn’t share either LOL)

    MEATHOUSE LOL Man, I’ve got to plan a dinner get-together really soon!! So I can take you guys down with me to fat heaven … or hell. Whichever takes less to walk. ;p

    Posted by Yas | September 22, 2009, 11:57 pm
  9. Only one word can describe it. Mouth-watering!!

    Posted by Ellie | September 24, 2009, 10:18 am
  10. Koreans have a variation of this dish, though it’s more often uses beef over pork, with some minor variations in spices used. It’s often served at room temperate rather than hot.

    I guess you could make something like a quick vichysoisse with it which, of course, would be served chilled.

    Posted by Simon | September 26, 2009, 5:54 pm
  11. @Ellie
    Hehe oh yes for the fatty layers!

    Ohhh that’s a nice idea!
    Oh funny, my cousin recently traveled to Korea, and what she mentioned must be the beef kakuni like dish!

    Posted by Yas | September 26, 2009, 10:42 pm

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