Chashu Pork Roast (pressure cooker)

>>  Thursday, January 10, 2013

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This post is a part of a larger post about making ramen using a kit from the famous ramen shop in Tokyo, Rokurinsha.

I hope this doesn't get old too soon, but I'm having so much fun with my new pressure cooker.

I'm still floored by the idea that something that should take hours to cook can be finished in 1/3 the time, just because it's cooked under a higher pressure (and thus a higher temperature).
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I decided to make braised chasu pork as one of several components of my super complicated "instant" ramen from Rokurinsha in Tokyo. I was already cooking the pork belly sous vide for 36 hours; why not go all out and try to cook the pork roast in a pressure cooker?

I had actually originally planned on making pork shoulder. Unfortunately, the normal American supermarket that I visited didn't have any, so I had to settle for "pork roast", which is leaner than shoulder (or butt), and therefore, harder to make super soft and tender.

Nevertheless, the pressure cooker performed gorgeously.  I stopped by a grocery store on my way home from work; picked up some pork roast; and managed to cook the meat in an hour for our ramen dinner.

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The recipe is pretty simple, actually. Gather up your typical Asian aromatic (onions, ginger, garlic, and scallions).
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Briefly brown the pork roast until a nice, brown surface forms on both sides.
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Add your aromatics.
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Then add all the lovely flavoring liquids, such as soy sauce, mirin, sake, and water. Cook under pressure for about 1 hour (minimum), and 2 hours for insanely soft results.

We did eat a portion of it after it had cooked for one hour. We left the rest of it in the pressure cooker and continued to cook it for another hour. After two hours, even the super lean pork roast was meltingly tender.

I'm guessing if you used pork shoulder/butt (which is higher in fat content), you won't need to cook it for as long as I cooked the pork roast.

Assemble, and enjoy!
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Chashu Pork Roast
2 lbs pork shoulder
200 mL soy sauce
200 mL sake
200 mL water
100 mL mirin
5 tablespoons sugar
2 stalked of scallions
5 cloves of garlic
2 inch knob of ginger

Sear pork shoulder on all sides in pressure pot. Add liquids and aromatics. Cook until sugar is melted. Cover and wait until pressure reaches 4 bars. Cook for 2 hours. Cool and slice.

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