Aside from embracing rice as a staple, Okinawan food is completely different from Japanese food. Okinawan taste of home recipes tends toward thicker and spicier flavors than Japanese food recipes. It is more heavily influenced by Chinese culinary ways and techniques from China since The Ryukyu Kingdom in fourteenth century.
Pork is the cornerstone in Okinawa cuisine, such as beef is with Americans. Okinawans apply each part of pig, from pig’s ear, pig’s tripe to pig’s feet in their daily cooking. Rafute is a melting tender and succulent braised pork belly. This great Okinawa taste of home recipe is well recognized by the western palate. The pork is broiled, cooled and then slowly cooked to achieve tenderness and to eliminate fat. It is slowly simmered in a detachable combination of brown sugar, sake, soy sauce until it is melt-in-the-mouth tender.
Okinawan Taste OfÂ Home Recipe – Rafute:
Ingredient: (4 servings):
- 1kg pork belly
- 100g fresh ginger, peeled and cut into thick slices
- 2 cups dashi
- 3/4 cups sake
- 1/4 cup mirin
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup low sodium soy sauce
- Cut the pork belly into bite-sized cubes. Blanch the pork cubes with boiling water in a large pot to remove any excess oil. Drain and set aside.
- Mix ginger, dashi, sake mirin, brown sugar, soy sauce in a heavy based saucepan, stir over high heat until the sugar is dissolved.
- Add the pork and return to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook, turning occasionally for one hour or until the pork cubes are tender. When the sauce reduced to slightly syrupy glaze, stop the heat.
- Arrange the pork cubes in serving dish. Pour over the remaining sauce and serve with little mustard on the side, if you like.