An oriental twist on streaky slices – sweet, sour, spicy and sticky

Our sage last summer. I can't wait for winter to be over so my garden can come to life again. It's full of herbs so smells divine!

What do you think you smell of?

My mum used to say that she could tell where people came from by how they smelt.

She’s a bit bonkers is my mum, and I stopped trying to reason with her on matters like this a long time ago.

The last time we had this discussion was probably a good 8-10 years ago when my husband and I were back in Singapore for a visit.

At that time, she argued that Chinese people have a kind of smell (a nice one obviously), and men like my husband ie ‘western/white’ (and please don’t think she/I are saying this in any racist way because we’re not), smell very differently (also nice but different though :)).

She knows everyone has their own unique, personal smell but she still believes she can tell most nationalities apart by the way they collectively smell. To this day, I’m still not convinced but I love that she thinks that way.

She’s never really fully explained what the different nationalities of people actually smelt like to her either, save to say that she said my smell changed after I moved away.

My favourite breed is the Tamworth Pig. I dream of rearing one and have been looking for a small farmer who might be happy to let me adopt one. (image from:

Obviously, diet must have a large part to do with how we smell and my diet’s changed significantly since I moved away from Asia. However, if you believe that you are what you eat, then that unfortunately makes me smell like a …pig!?!

Why? Because pork is seriously my all-time favourite type of meat.

I suddenly realised that pork recipes on my blog probably outnumber other meats by at least 3 to 1, and I have yet another pork recipe to post today (she says blushing).

But what does this have to do with my story about my mum’s theory of smell?

Absolutely nothing whatsoever. Sorry.

Because I was writing up this recipe, it made me think about pork, and as I thought about pork, I suddenly realised how much of it I ate, which then triggered my memory of the surreal conversation I had with my mother all those years ago.

It’s been over a year since we’ve seen my mum so I’m going to make a mental note to ask her how I smell again the next time we see her. If there is any truth to her theory though, it’s best I feed her some of this pork first. She might not think I smell as piggy then if she reeks of it too. 🙂

As for this recipe, what can I say? If you’re a fan of pork like I am, I think you’ll love these streaky slices. They’re basically larger slices of the same cut of pork as streaky bacon that hasn’t been smoked. The marinade works for all cuts of pork too, and is brilliant if you’re barbecuing. It’s still less than 5 degrees here so I did ours in the oven though putting them under a grill will get you that lovely charred effect as well. I actually take a chef’s blow torch to burn the pork just around the edges when it comes out.

Oven-baked streaky slices in my own jumbled up marinade.

For this recipe, I make a lot of marinade and effectively bake the pork slices in all of the marinade so that they’re almost being poached by it in the oven. Half way, I pour off the marinade into a saucepan and simmer it down even more while the pork browns off in the oven.

Sweet, sour, spicy, streaky slices.

As for the taste; it’s sweet, tangy, spicy and sour all at the same time, and you get all the stickiness of ribs without the mess.

All you really need is some plain rice and freshly steamed veg (no seasoning required) to help cut through the richness of the sauce.

If you manage to keep any pork left over, it tastes even better the next day, especially if you put it into a sandwich with some crisp lettuce and fresh tomatoes.

Streaky slices oven-baked in a sweet, spicy and tangy sauce.

Click here for a printer-friendlier version.

Lots of love


Sticky oven-baked streaky slices (Feeds 2-3 people)

5-6 streaky pork slices (skin off)

2 tablespoons soy sauce

2 tablespoons shaoxing rice wine

1 tablespoon of rice wine vinegar (you can use red/white wine vinegar too)

1 tablespoon ketchup

1 tablespoon chohula sauce (mild hot sauce with garlic)

1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 teaspoon five spice powder

1 tablespoon oyster sauce

2 tablespoons golden syrup/honey

(extra – not for the marinade) 1 tablespoon hot sauce

(extra – not for the marinade) 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

(extra – not for the marinade) 2 teaspoons cornflour mixed with 2-3 teaspoons water

They're delicious even without the final glaze - the sauce adds an extra kick of heat though

Put your pork slices, sauces and spices into a bowl and mix well. Allow to marinade for an hour or as long as possible.

Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Lay your slices flat on a baking tray or roasting dish, pouring all of the marinade over the meat. Cover with aluminium foil and bake in the oven for 20 minutes.

Remove the foil and bake your slices for another 10 minutes, turning once. There’ll still be quite a lot of liquid.

Pour this liquid into a saucepan but leave about 1-2 tablespoons in the pan with the pork.

Oven bake the streaky slices for another 15 – 20 minutes, turning and basting every 5-7 minutes. Remove and allow to stand for 5 minutes before slicing.

While your pork is still roasting, finish the glazing sauce. Set the marinade sauce to simmer and add the extra hot sauce and 1-2 tablespoons of water. When your pork is out of the oven and resting, thicken the sauce with the cornflour mixture. Pour this over your sliced pork and sprinkle the sesame seeds all over.

Serve with plain rice and steamed vegetables.

31 Responses to “An oriental twist on streaky slices – sweet, sour, spicy and sticky”
  1. Oh my goodness I just want to grab my chopsticks on to that plate and grab a piece. You wont mind will you??? Of course I love the flavor combinations.

  2. Fabulous marinade!
    🙂 Mandy

  3. Wow!
    These looks so yummy. I’m a pig fan too 😉 And this recipe sounds amazing…

  4. ChgoJohn says:

    Your photos sure make this dish look appetizing! You’ve shared a great marinade recipe, one that I cannot wait to try.

  5. You know people said that when they flew in somewhere like Heathrow and got onto the tube they could smell dairy. Apparently that’s what the British smell of. So mybe your mum isn’t totally nuts!

  6. Mm. Now I’m hungry. Love the shine and the sesame seeds.

  7. zestybeandog says:

    That is some of the best looking pork I’ve seen in a while! My mouth is watering and it’s only 8:30am!

  8. spicegirlfla says:

    I’ve never heard of streaky slices before!! They look amazing! I’m excited to learn of this recipe; I could see it going over very well!

    • Thank you. I normally always prefer meat on the bone but streaky slices are so convenient as there’s no mess in involved. Hope you can find some or ask your butcher. They might be called something differently where you are? These are almost 2 cm thick.

  9. I love this recipe:) I think I’ll have to read through it a few more times to savor it… I am also a realtor and I find people’s homes smell different, depending on Nationality. So maybe it is food.. but not that we eat it but that our clothes, etc become “scented” with the ingredients we cook with regularly.. I guess that means I wouldn’t mind smelling like a pig either!

  10. Love Chinese five spice and your marinade sounds terrific. Now that I think on it, I agree that people do all smell different, though I’d never grouped it by nationality per se, but can see how that might be so. I have friends who won’t eat garlic because it makes them smell like it….so sad!

  11. billpeeler says:

    Looks, delicious, BFN —–

  12. You’re killing me with those pics!

  13. That looks seriously delicious BFN. My friend Mi Mi who is originally from Taiwan said the same thing about Chinese people…we discussed and and decided it had to do entirely with diet (well, for some it may be hygiene!)

  14. This looks really delicious. Even the name sounds tasty!

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