Meigan braised pork is a dish made with “Mei Gan Cai” (梅乾菜 MéiGānCài), mustard green that’s salted, fermented, and sundried. MeiGan braised pork is a classic Hakka dish, it’s delicious with rice, between bao buns(刈包), or over a bowl of hearty noodles. There’s so much flavor in MeiGanCai, this dish doesn’t need much to taste AMAZING.
Sunlight and salt can do wonders to simple vegetables. MeiGanCai is made with mustard greens, salted, sundried, fermented, steamed, then sundried again. MeiGanCai adds a lot of umami to the dish, it’s a unique flavor you can’t replace with anything else.
You can get MeiGanCai at your local Asian food store if they carry a selection of Chinese/Taiwanese products. I sometimes find them wet in vacuum-sealed packages. If you’re local in Rochester, MN- I brought back some Mei Gan Cai from Taiwan and they are at FIGUE!
Because of the way Mei Gan Cai is sundried, sometimes they can get a lot of sand stuck in them. Make sure you rinse, wash it well!
The most classic and iconic way to cook Mei Gan Cai is MeiGan braised pork. Since my dad doesn’t eat pork, it was always a treat when my mom would make this dish. I could eat nothing but MeiGan braised pork and rice all day.
- 4 TBsp Soy Sauce
- 1 TBsp Chinese Rice Wine Replace with vodka
- 1 ½ TBsp Sugar
- 2 TBsp Oil
- 1 lb Pork Belly or Pork butt/shoulder roast
- 1 C MeiGanCai 梅乾菜
- 3 Cloves Garlic Minced
- 1 Star Anise
- Take Mei Gan Cai out of the package, soak in water, rinse, clean, repeat. Get rid of any sand that might be stuck in it from sun-drying. Drain, chop into 1" piece(or smaller) then set aside.
- Cut pork into 3" x 2" pieces, about ½" thick. Marinade in 4TBsp soy sauce.
- Heat up 2TBsp oil in a pot on medium-high heat. Sear the pork slices until they change color, remove pork from the pot.
- Add 1½TBsp sugar to the same hot pot until it turns slightly golden, pour the leftover soy sauce from pork marinade, 1TBsp Chinese rice wine, minced garlic, star anise, Mei Gan Cai, and pork into the pot. Pour enough water to cover the pork and 1" over.
- Bring the pot to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cook on low heat for about 30 minutes, or until the meat is tender & falls apart. Add more water to the pot if the stew is drying out too fast.
- The braising part of the cooking can also be done in a pressure cooker.
- Add a bit more soy sauce or salt to taste before serving.