Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs

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Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs, known as “Thịt Kho Trứng” in Vietnamese, is a classic dish that holds a special place in Vietnamese cuisine and culture. This hearty and flavorful dish consists of tender chunks of pork belly or shoulder simmered in a fragrant mixture of caramelized sugar, fish sauce, and a variety of aromatic spices like garlic, shallots, and black pepper. The dish is then gently cooked until the pork becomes melt-in-your-mouth tender and infused with rich, savory flavors.

What sets this dish apart is the addition of boiled eggs, which soak up the delicious sauce, adding an extra layer of texture and flavor. These eggs are often hard-boiled before being added to the simmering pot, allowing them to absorb the essence of the savory broth, transforming them into savory treats that burst with every bite.

Braised Pork and Eggs is not only a beloved comfort food in Vietnamese households but also a staple during special occasions and family gatherings. Its preparation often involves slow cooking over low heat, allowing the flavors to meld together beautifully, resulting in a dish that is both comforting and deeply satisfying.

Whether served with steamed rice or alongside other Vietnamese dishes, such as pickled vegetables or fresh herbs, Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs is sure to delight with its rich, aromatic flavors and tender textures, offering a taste of Vietnam’s culinary heritage with every mouthful.

Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs meaning

In the context of Tet, which is the Vietnamese Lunar New Year, Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs holds special significance as it is a traditional dish often prepared and enjoyed during this festive occasion. Known as “Thịt Kho Trứng” in Vietnamese, this dish symbolizes prosperity, abundance, and family togetherness, making it a staple on Tet dining tables across Vietnam.

The ingredients used in Thịt Kho Trứng, such as pork and eggs, carry symbolic meanings in Vietnamese culture. Pork is associated with wealth and prosperity due to its richness, while eggs symbolize fertility, new beginnings, and the continuity of life. Therefore, serving Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs during Tet signifies hopes for a prosperous and bountiful year ahead, as well as the importance of family unity and continuity of traditions.

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Beyond its symbolic significance, Thịt Kho Trứng is also a practical choice for Tet celebrations, as it can be prepared ahead of time and reheated, allowing families to spend more time together during the busy holiday season.

Overall, Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs holds deep cultural and symbolic meaning in the context of Tet, representing wishes for abundance, prosperity, and familial harmony in the coming year.

Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs
Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs

How to cook Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs

Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs

Prep Time30 minutes
Cook Time1 hour 30 minutes
Total Time2 hours
Keyword: Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs

Ingredients

  • 500 g pork belly or pork shoulder (cut into bite-sized pieces)
  • 4 eggs
  • 3 cloves garlic (minced)
  • 2 shallots (finely chopped)
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 3 tablespoons fish sauce
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Optional: sliced green onions and chopped cilantro for garnish

Instructions

  • Hard boil the eggs: Place the eggs in a pot and cover them with cold water. Bring the water to a boil over medium-high heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer for 8-10 minutes. Once cooked, remove the eggs from the pot, cool them under cold running water, peel, and set aside.
  • In a large skillet or pot, heat the vegetable oil over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and chopped shallots, and cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes.
  • Add the pork pieces to the skillet and cook until they are browned on all sides, about 5-7 minutes.
  • Sprinkle the sugar over the pork and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the sugar caramelizes and coats the pork, about 3-5 minutes.
  • Pour in the fish sauce, soy sauce, and black pepper, stirring to combine with the pork.
  • Add the water to the skillet, making sure the pork is fully submerged. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for 1.5 to 2 hours, or until the pork is tender and the sauce has thickened. Stir occasionally and add more water if needed to prevent sticking or burning.
  • Once the pork is tender, gently add the hard-boiled eggs to the skillet, making sure they are submerged in the sauce. Simmer for an additional 10-15 minutes to allow the eggs to absorb the flavors of the sauce.
  • Serve the Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs hot, garnished with sliced green onions and chopped cilantro if desired. Enjoy with steamed rice and your favorite side dishes.

Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs nutrition

The nutritional information for Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs can vary depending on factors such as the specific ingredients used and the portion sizes. However, here’s a general overview of the nutritional content for a typical serving of this dish:

  • Calories: Approximately 400-500 calories per serving
  • Protein: Around 20-25 grams per serving
  • Fat: Approximately 25-35 grams per serving, with most of it coming from the pork belly or shoulder
  • Carbohydrates: Varies depending on the amount of sugar and any rice or other accompaniments served with the dish, but typically around 10-20 grams per serving
  • Fiber: Minimal, as this dish is primarily protein and fat-based
  • Sodium: The fish sauce and soy sauce used in the recipe can contribute to the sodium content, so it’s important to be mindful of this if you’re watching your sodium intake
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Additionally, the nutritional profile may change depending on any modifications or substitutions made to the recipe, such as using leaner cuts of pork or adjusting the amounts of sugar and sauces used.

While Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs can be a delicious and satisfying dish, it’s important to enjoy it in moderation as part of a balanced diet, especially if you’re watching your calorie or sodium intake. Incorporating plenty of vegetables and whole grains alongside this dish can help round out your meal and provide additional nutrients.

Benefits of Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs

While Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs is a flavorful and satisfying dish, it’s important to note that it should be enjoyed in moderation as part of a balanced diet. However, it does offer some nutritional benefits:

  1. Protein: Both pork and eggs are rich sources of high-quality protein, which is essential for building and repairing tissues, supporting muscle growth, and maintaining overall health.
  2. Nutrient Density: Pork contains essential vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B12, zinc, selenium, and phosphorus, which play vital roles in energy metabolism, immune function, and bone health. Eggs are also packed with nutrients, including vitamin A, vitamin D, vitamin B12, and choline, which are important for vision, bone health, nerve function, and brain development.
  3. Satiety: The combination of protein and healthy fats from pork and eggs can help promote feelings of fullness and satiety, which may help control appetite and prevent overeating.
  4. Flavor and Enjoyment: Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs is a flavorful and comforting dish that can bring joy and satisfaction to the dining experience. Enjoying meals that are delicious and satisfying can contribute to overall well-being and happiness.
  5. Cultural and Social Connection: Food plays a significant role in culture and social gatherings, and enjoying traditional dishes like Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs can foster a sense of connection to one’s cultural heritage and community.

While Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs offers some nutritional benefits, it’s important to be mindful of portion sizes and overall dietary balance. Enjoying this dish as part of a varied diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins can help ensure optimal nutrition and health.

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Conclusion

Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs, known as “Thịt Kho Trứng,” is a beloved dish in Vietnamese cuisine that offers both cultural significance and culinary delight. This hearty and flavorful dish combines tender chunks of pork with boiled eggs in a savory-sweet sauce infused with aromatic spices. While it provides protein, essential nutrients, and a sense of cultural connection, it’s important to enjoy it in moderation as part of a balanced diet. With its rich flavors and comforting qualities, Vietnamese Braised Pork and Eggs serves as a delicious reminder of the vibrant culinary heritage of Vietnam.

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