Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Singapore Hainanese Pork Chops

I didn't realise that I have been away for 2 weeks. Time flies! Last week I had a very bad bout of food poisoning, I did a merlion roar (first time I threw up in 20 years!) on day 1, followed by 4 days of continuous diarrhoea. My stomach was practically churning non-stop like a washing machine even though I have completely stopped consuming any solid foods except water and bread. I took poh chai pills and motilium in the beginning but stopped taking them because I feared the pills would lead to more revolutions in my stomach. My mind was so muddled that I couldn't think properly! On hind sight, I should have downed more of those poh chai pills to cut short my suffering, stupid me! 

Anyway, at one point in time, I thought I was going to die of diarrhoea, seriously. I thought I had stomach cancer or some incurable stomach-related diseases. I even prayed to God that I would cherish my life and keep an eye on my diet after I recover. No, it was not due to over-eating, it was probably due to some contaminated food that I ate or maybe stomach flu which I got from the creche which I send my child to. But, I threw caution to the winds straight after I recovered, and started to yearn for food that I missed badly.

The first Singapore specialty that I badly want to cook and eat after enduring my 5 days of ordeal is.....guess what? One of the most famous chinese dishes in Singapore: Singapore Hainanese Pork Chops! Being half a hainanese, I must say my hainanese pork chops are not as authentic as those cooked by the hainan chefs from my mum's side of the family, but definitely good enough for me and my family. :)

Didnt have time to take a better picture because we were all starving!

Adapted from iloveicookibake and 3HungryTummies (for 5 servings)

Seasoning for marinade
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 tsp sesame oil
3 tsp chinese cooking wine (can replace with sherry)
2 tbsp light soya sauce
1/4 tsp pepper
1 tbsp corn flour 
1 egg

Sauce ingredients

5 tbsp tomato ketchup
1 tbsp worchester sauce
1 tbsp oyster sauce
2 tbsp sugar (too sweet, should reduce to 1 or 1.5 tbsp)
1/2 cup chicken stock (using knorr chicken cube)
1 tbsp corn flour for thickening

Other ingredients
900g pork cutlet (5 pieces, each cut into 1/2, to make 10 pieces) *
1 cup cracker biscuits (crushed+ 1 cup breadcrumb flour **
1/2 cup oil for frying
1 big onion, julienned
4 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tomatoes, each cut into 8 wedges
1 can pineapples, cut into small pieces

* pork cutlet = varkenskotelet in Dutch
** using LU parovita volkorencrackers met sesamzaad and paneermeel as breadcrumb flour

Method for frying pork chops
1. Use a mallet to flatten the pork chops. Or you can use a fork to prick holes all over the pork chops, then marinate them with the seasoning for at least 1 hour.

2. Coat the pork chops evenly with the mixture of crushed crackers + breadcrumb flour. 

3. Heat up a frying pan to medium-high heat with some oil, shallow-fry the coated pork chops for 10 min, 5 min for each side. (My pork chops were rather big and fat so they needed a longer time to cook.) Do not crowd the pan,  fry them in 2 or more batches. Turn the pork chops regularly to make sure both sides are equally browned. Once they are golden-brown and crispy, remove them and set them aside on a piece of kitchen roll or baking paper to drain off the oil.

Method for preparing pork chop sauce

1. Heat up a wok to medium-high heat with 2 tbsp oil. Saute the garlic till fragrant, then add in the onions and fry for 1 min. 

2. Add in the cut tomato wedges, chicken stock and sauce ingredients, followed by canned pineapples. Let the sauce come to a boil.

3. Once it starts boiling, adjust to taste by adding salt and pepper if necessary. Add 1 tbsp corn flour to thicken the sauce and stir well.

4. Pour the pork chop sauce over the fried pork chops and now we are ready to serve. :)


  1. Hallo Miss B,
    Hope you are feeling better. Being ill is simply horrid.Anyways I agree with you on the pork chops yums...makes me hungry.Love them.
    So cheer up, weather is getting better now for the last 3 days...and keep posting.Karen from Huy..

  2. Hope you have fully recovered - food poisoning, stomach flu is horrible :(
    By the way, motilium taken in excess dosage ( as in double what is recommended,) can lead to lactation :)
    Your Hainanese Pork Chops look delicious and remind me of my favourite dish - Sweet and Sour Pork Ribs :D My hubby is half Hainanese - well his dad was from there and I'm clueless to what dishes are from that region!

    1. Hehe, I know that motilium helps lactation, used to take that in the beginning stage of breastfeeding. Nowadays the Belgian health authorities want to enforce the need for a prescription on the use of motilium, as too many breastfeeding mums have been "abusing" it, so to speak. :)

      Oh, your hubby is also half a hainanese? The other famous dishes, which incidentally did not originate from Hainan but from hainanese who migrated to Singapore in early 20th century, are the (world famous) hainanese chicken rice, hainanese curry rice and hainanese chap chai (mixed veggies). Hainanese men were often chefs in hotels/restsurants/coffee shops or chefs in the British army during colonial days. They were the last dialect group to land in Singapore, and all the cushy jobs had already been snatched up by hokkiens and teochews, so they ended up as chefs, which was a much better job than being a coolie or trishaw-driver. That was the traditional profession of most hainanese men, in fact we still have a few male relatives from my mum's side who are chefs in hotels or restaurants. :)

  3. I've never had Hainanese Pork Chops. Looks fusion with worchester sauce and crackers :-) Bet your bout of diarrhoea was completely gone when you downed your delicious pork chops LOL!

    BTW, I read somewhere that consuming motilium caused some side effects. Are poh chai pills similar to chi kit teck aun pills? I normally take these and they work quite well. Handy to have in your handbag when travelling or on the road for long hours.... Hope you're feeling much better

    1. You never had hainanese pork chops in Malaysia ? So it's really a Singapore dish! I thought they have it in Malaysia too!

      I am not sure whether the real authentic pork chops require the use of worchester sauce though. It could well be that the hainanese chefs got the idea of using worchester sauce while working in the kitchens of British families. A lot of the dishes had been influenced by the British since many hainanese chefs were working for the British during colonial days.

      Chi kit teck aun pills - I have not heard of it, can you get them in Belgium as well ?
      Poh chai pills are very famous in Singapore, just like tiger balm, every family keeps a packet at home for emergencies. :)

    2. Well, the side effects of motilium are - increase in lactation if you are breastfeeding, and loose stools. ;p

    3. I googled it, now I know what you are referring to - 德安风痧丸!
      I have heard of it from radio adverts when I was young, my mum may have given it to me once or twice when I had tummyache, but most of the time I took Poh Chai Pills (保济丸). I believe Poh Chai pills are similar to Chi Kit Teck Aun pills, both claim to be completely herbal and without side effects; and can cure stomachache, diarrhoea, vomitting, motion sickness. Never knew that Chi Kit Teck Aun pills are made in Malaysia. :)

    4. Same here, I also googled poh chai pills. They looked uncannily similar to chi kit teck aun pills :-) Guess it's the same thing with different package and name.

  4. That's what I thought about this recipe, ie with the Colonial influence etc. This dish may be a popular dish in Penang and Malacca, with the Eurasian and Nonya flavours, very similar to dishes in Singapore ;-)

  5. Hi I just made your dish n I am very happy with the results. I did change by replacing the Worcestershire sauce with Kikkoman Teriyaki Honey n Soy. Thanks for your recipe. I shall write it in my blog.

    1. Appreciate if you can link back to my blog and also post your blog link here, thanks!


    3. Thanks for sharing, I like your detailed step by steps instructions with pix.

    4. You have so many great dishes - hope to try more of your recipes soon


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