Ro Zao (Braised Ground Pork) Chinese comfort food from my childhood.
As promised, here is the recipe to make this deliciously simple, yet hearty, traditional Chinese dish! I really hope you give this a try — I can’t express to you how delicious this is and how awesome it makes your house smell. I promise, if you make this once, it won’t be the last time you’ll be making it, or at least it won’t be the last time your family is asking for it :)
- 1 package of spiced dry tofu (it has 4 patties in it, I used 3)
- 5-6 dried shiitake mushrooms
- 1.5 lbs. ground pork
- 1.5 tsp. 5 spice powder
- 4 hard-boiled eggs
- 3 cups rice
- 3.5 cups water
- 1 cup (or more) of soy sauce
- 1.5 tbsp. of fried scallions (you can usually find this at Asian marts, they come in a large plastic jar most of the time)
- Couple tsp. corn starch (I used about 5 tsp.)
- Prepare and cook your rice according to instructions (I have a rice cooker so I just popped my rice & water in there).
- In a small pot, put your eggs in and fill it up with water to cover the eggs. Put on stove and hard-boil your 4 eggs for about 7-10 minutes.
- Soak your dried mushrooms in hot water to soften them.
- While the mushrooms are soaking, dice the tofu into cubes.
- After your mushrooms are softened, slice them into cubes as well.
- Once your eggs are done, run them under cold water and then peel off the shells.
- In a medium sized pot, on high heat, cook your pork. When the pork is halfway done cooking, add in the tofu, mushrooms and fried scallions.
- Add in the soy sauce. You want a dark brown color from the soy sauce so you might need more than a cup of soy sauce. After you’ve added in the soy sauce, you can add in the 5 spice powder.
- Stir and cook everything for about 5 minutes then take 3.5 cups of water (more or less) to cover the entire pork mixture.
- Add in your (whole) eggs. Bury them with the pork and liquid.
- Bring the liquid mixture to a boil and then let it simmer on low on the stove for 30-45 minutes, stirring occasionally (but be careful not to puncture the eggs, you want them to be pretty!). The longer you let it simmer, the more flavor, so I usually like keeping it on low for an hour or more and wait until the liquid is mostly cooked out.
- If you want the thicker liquid consistency, you can add in corn starch (prepare the corn starch by putting the corn starch in a small bowl and mixing it with water then pouring the corn starch mixture in the pork mixture while on the stove).
- Serve over rice and enjoy!!
This is the thicker liquid consistency that I like, but everyone is different and you don’t have to do it this way.
Note: a lot of this recipe is based on taste. The recipe I gave above is what I used to achieve the way my mom has made it and the way I’ve grown up with. You can of course tailor it to your taste buds with more or less soy sauce, more or less 5 spice powder, more or less mushrooms..etc. If you have questions, feel free to ask!