Supercharge the Umami taste with Shiitake! Simple Bak Kut Teh

A soup rich in natural amino acids! This healthy dish has a rich soup that is so delicious you won't be able to resist slurping it all up! Parboil the pork spare ribs in the beginning, to get rid of excess fat and off-tastes. Let the ingredients boil for a longer time to make it more flavorful. If you don't want the spices to get in the way when eating, insert the small spices in a tea bag or Dashi broth bag in step 4. As Bak Kut Teh uses many spices, it may not seem easy to cook. Still, we came up with a recipe that can be easily made in Japanese households, using Dashi broth extracted from Shiitake and ingredients easily available in Japan.

Ingredients (4 servings)

  • 600g Pork spare ribs
  • 6 pieces dried Shiitake
  • 1500ml ●Water
  • 1 bulb ●Garlic
  • 50g ●Ginger (sliced)
  • 4 ●Star anise
  • 2 tsp ●Black pepper (whole)
  • 1 tsp ●Coriander seed (whole) if available
  • 1 tsp ●Clove
  • 8 ●Cardamom pods (whole)
  • 1 ●Cinnamon stick
  • 2 Tbsp ●Soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp ●Oyster sauce
  • A pinch of salt & pepper
  • Coriander, to taste


Rehydrate the dried Shiitake. Remove the stems.

Bring a pot of water to a boil and add the pork spare ribs. Once boiling again, remove the pork and rinse with water (to get rid of off-tastes.)
Peel the outer skins of the garlic. You may leave the thin inner skins as is. If you are not particular about it, you may insert the garlic without peeling at all.

Add 1., 2., and ● into the pot, bring to a boil, and turn the heat down to low.

Simmer over low heat without the lid on for about one hour and a half until the meat is tender. Regularly skim off the scum that appears while simmering.

Season with salt and pepper to taste after it is cooked.

Pour into a bowl, garnish with coriander to taste, and serve.
Add dark soy sauce and enjoy the change in taste, or pour it over rice for an extravagant meal!



More recipes