Guest chef

Shu Han Lee

Born in Singapore, Shu Han Lee set up her food blog,, when she left home for the first time, and wanted to prove to her mum that she could feed herself! Her debut cookbook, Chicken And Rice (Fig Tree, £20), is out now.

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Caramel pork ribs (Thit kho to)

  • Serves 2
  • Prep 10 mins
  • Total time 30 mins
5.0/5 rating (1 votes)
Caramel pork ribs (Thit kho to)
Caramel pork ribs (Thit kho to)

step by step

  • 1Divide the ribs into individual bones if they're not already jointed, and use a heavy chef's knife or cleaver to chop them into 6cm pieces (or get the butcher to do it).
  • 2Set a wok over a low heat and add the oil. Pour the sugar evenly over the bottom of the wok and let it melt, stirring occasionally.
  • Although people are generally becoming better aware of the subtleties across Asian cuisines, there are many who still expect some form of sweet, sticky stir-fry. While I hope to prove there is much more beyond that, 'sweet sticky stir-fries' can be pretty amazing when done well!
  • 3Once the sugar has melted and turned golden, turn up the heat to medium and stir in the pork ribs. Drizzle in the fish sauce, add the garlic and chillies, and toss to make sure the pork is well coated.
  • 4Add a dash of warm water and bring to the boil. Once boiling, add a pinch of sea salt, cover and let simmer on a low heat for 20 minutes, until the pork is cooked and tender.
  • 5Uncover and cook on a medium heat to reduce the sauce, until it thickens and becomes sticky enough to coat the pork. Finish with a sprinkling of sliced spring onion.
  • Instead of ribs you can also use an equal weight of cubed pork belly or pork shoulder.
  • Recipe photograph by Shu Han Lee

You will need

  • 500g pork spare ribs
  • 1 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 4 heaped tbsp light brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 bird eye chillies, chopped
  • sea salt
  • 1 spring onion, sliced

+ Nutritional Information