Asian Braised Pork & Pickled Cucumber Salad

Anne Burrell, the Rock Star chef…did an Hawaiian themed show last week featured her Asian Braised Pork and Pickled Cucumber & Daikon Salad.   It was SO appealing, we had to try it.  Delicioso!

Yummy Asian Braised Pork

Spicy Cucumber Salad & Asian Sauce Reduction

We also served rice cooked with chicken broth, a salad with tomatoes (what else?) for those who aren’t pickled fans, some dinner rolls, and a nice red wine.  For dessert, we served my double cloud vanilla ice cream, with a grilled pineapple rum sauce (recipe to follow).

NOTES:  We used about 6 lbs. of a 9 lb. pork butt, so we doubled the braising recipe for the pork.  We only used 1 cup of Oyster Sauce (instead of two, since we only had one jar), but many of the reviews of Anne’s recipe noted the high sodium content of the Oyster sauce. An excellent decision, the flavor was great without being overly salty.

Also, at the 2 1/2 hour mark, after following Anne’s recipe (2 hours covered, 1/2 hour uncovered), we proceeded to remove about 4 cups of the braising liquid, and put it in the freezer to solidify the fat, returning the meat to the oven, covered, for another half hour.  Once the sauce had cooled, we scraped the fat from the top (and saved it in an ice cube tray for another day!), strained the liquid, and then reheated, reducing by about 1/3.  It was the perfect consistency, and didn’t need any further reduction.  The orange peel and star anise totally make this recipe….note the beautiful color and finish on the pork!

After 3 stores and no daikon….we used a package of regular red radishes, which were delicious and quite pretty in the pickled salad.  The pickling liquid is so delicious that it could (and should) be used for general pickling purposes, we’ve been considering other veggies to “pickle” with this delicious brew.

As always, a good time was had by all….at our Hawaiian themed Friday Night Dinner Party (which we held on a Wednesday, but what the hay?)!

The Stage is Set

Bon Appetit!

~ Blonde Gator & Island Girl

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