Last Updated on May 2, 2022 by Share My Kitchen
Cashu Don can impress people at potluck events or projects. Although making Japanese Cashu Don is admittedly time-consuming, it is well worth it.
What does Cashu mean in Japanese?
Cashu means braised pork, so inevitably, the Japanese Cashu Don refers to a braised pork dish. The meat is braised for at least 2 hours until it becomes fork-tender.
How To Marinate The Meat For Cashu Don?
As with all Japanese recipes, you need to prepare the marinade made using the usual golden trio (sake, mirin, soy sauce). Then, allow the marinade to penetrate the meat and fats by leaving it in the refrigerator overnight or longer.
What Type Of Meat To Use For Japanese Cashu Don?
This recipe used two types of pork parts: pork belly, and the collar butt. Preferably, pork belly is a better choice; the sweetness of the fats will keep you wanting more. However, you can choose to eat collar butt if you are concerned about your health. It is leaner and has fewer fats, and still tastes great! This can be paired with the classic ramen egg or Hanjuku Tamago, blanched bok choy, and high-quality Japanese short grain pearl rice.
6 SERVINGS – 4 HOURS (less overnight marinating)
- 400g of pork belly
- 300g of pork collar butt
- 4 sprigs of scallions
- 1 sprig of leek, cut in half
- 4 cloves of garlic – lightly crushed with skin on
- 2 knobs of ginger, 1 1/2 inch size each – lightly crushed
- water, enough to cover the pork
- 2 cups of braising liquid
- 1 cup of soy sauce
- 1 cup of sake
- 1 cup of mirin
- 1 cup of brown sugar
- 2 tbsp. honey
How to Prepare Cashu Don
- In a non-stick pan or pot, brown the pork belly and collar butt on all sides. This seals the pork juices. Then, use a paper towel to remove any fats from the pork after it has been browned. If you are using a pan to brown the pork, transfer it into a pot.
- Add enough water to cover the pork. Then add the rest of the ingredients for braising. Let it cook on low heat for 2 hours. If you prefer the meat to be tender, continue to leave it for at least 3 hours. However, not more than that, because it may break down when handled if left for too long. Test the pork with a skewer after 2-3 hours. It should be easy to pass through it. Remove the pork from the braising liquid and allow it to cool.
- Next, prepare the marinade by combining all ingredients in a separate saucepan and boil the mixture for about a minute or two. Then taste to check the seasoning. Add more sugar if it is not sweet enough; if it is not salty enough, add more soy sauce. The marinade should have a level of sweetness similar to teriyaki sauce. Keep in mind that all in all it should be balanced, but a little sweeter.
- Put the pork into the marinade, and let them simmer for 5 minutes or so. The pork should be covered with the marinade. Then, leave the marinade and pork cool. You may put the whole pot in the refrigerator, or transfer it to a Ziploc then leave it in the fridge overnight. Remember to reserve some marinating liquid to use for the eggs, too.
- Place the eggs at room temperature in a pan, then add enough water to cover half inch higher over the eggs. Next, boil the water while stirring with a spoon. Be careful not to crack eggs. Once the water has boiled, set your timer to 3 1/2 minutes (or 4 minutes for big eggs) and continue stirring. Make sure you have a bowl of ice-water ready. Transfer the eggs to the ice water once the timer has expired. After that, lightly crack the eggshell and allow it to sit in the ice for about a minute or two.
- Then, remove the shells. It should come off easily. The outside of the egg should be fully cooked, while the center should be a little soft because the yolks are only half cooked. You should be able to feel this with your fingers.
- After peeling the shells, transfer them in Ziploc bags, and add the chilled marinade. Let them rest in the fridge overnight.
ASSEMBLING CASHU DON
- After overnight marinating, oil will form on the top of the liquid. Remove those fats. Next, take the meat out and cut it into pieces. Then, place the meat on an oven tray, and brush a layer of marinade on the meat. Broil it in the oven while brushing more marinade. Turn the meat halfway through broiling, and continue to mash more marinade as needed. The broiling time may take about 15 minutes. When the meat is nicely charred and has reached a very nice deep brown color, it’s done.
- Make sure you have enough rice to go around. Blanch the baby bok choys and cut the hanjuku tamago in half. Then, place the meat on top of rice, and assemble the greens and egg. Next, boil the marinade and pour a few tablespoons over the pork. For the final touch, garnish with scallions and sesame seeds.