MeHi.  My name is Mark and this is my cooking blog.

I get asked a lot for my recipes, so I decided to start this cooking blog.  What you’ll find here will be my recipes and my variations on others’ recipes, my cooking tips and who knows what else. 

I should say up front that I’m lactose intolerant (check out my lactose intolerance site and I also try to live a low-carb lifestyle.  So the recipes you’ll find here will generally be devoid of milk and milk products and try, wherever possible, to be low in carbs.

I hope you enjoy the site and the recipes.


Main Dishes20 Apr 2009 03:19 am

This is a recipe for Chinese-style BBQ pork chops.  It will remind you of Chinese BBQ pork (Char Siu) but is something you can make without a lot of prep and without firing up the oven.   It uses a combination of a dry rub and a basting sauce.


Dry rub: 
2 tbs five spice powder (see notes)
1/2 tsp star anise powder (see notes)
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp sea or kosher salt

4 tbs hoisin sauce (see notes)
1/2 tbs sesame oil
1/2 tbs low sodium soy sauce

2 lbs loin pork chops – reasonably trimmed and cut about 1 inch thick – about 6 chops
toasted sesame seeds

Mix the dry rub ingredients together in a small bowl making sure they are well blended.  Pat the pork chops dry and coat both sides with the rub.  Let stand 1/2 hour or so.

Mix the sauce ingredients together in a small bowl making sure the sesame oil is well incorporated.  Set aside.

Fire up your BBQ.  I use a Weber three burner gas grill. Pre-heat the grill until it is good and hot.  Turn off the center burner and reduce the heat to medium on the outer two burners.  (If you have two burner grill, turn off the front burner and turn down the back burner to medium or follow whatever procedure came with your grill for indirect heating.  For a charcoal grill, move the coals to one side or whatever you normally do for indirect heating.  The point is you want indirect heat.)  Put the pork chops on the portion of the grill without the flame.  Lower the cover and cook for 6 minutes.  Open the cover and baste the chops with the sauce.  Flip the chops over and baste again.  (You should have used all the sauce by now.)  Lower the cover and cook for 2 minutes.  Open the cover and cook for another 3 minutes (unless it’s cold and windy out, in which case just leave the cover down.    This will total about 8 minutes – 14 minutes total.  For thinner or thicker chops you’ll have to adjust.

Remove the chops from the grill and sprinkle with toasted sesame seeds.  Serve and enjoy!

I served this with some simple, steamed Gai Choy (Chinese mustard cabbage).  The hot spicy flavor of the Gai Choy is a prefect counter-point to the smoky sweet pork.

Notes:  You can get 5 spice powder at any market but it will be way over-priced if you get it in the spice aisle of a normal grocery store.  Go to an Asian market and you will pay a fraction of the price.  Same with the star anise powder.  If you can’t find star anise powder, you could substitute ground fennel seeds.  Hoisin sauce should be available at any well-stocked grocery store (Asian food section) but you’ll be better off at an Asian market.  I like the Lee Kum Kee brand.  Ditto the sesame oil.  If you like some fire in your food, add some Sriracha sauce to the sauce.