Peranakan Babi Pongteh with Bamboo Shoots

Babi Pongteh is a popular dish among the peranakan household and usually served during festive occasions. Originally this dish was cooked with bamboo shoots but nowadays potatoes are used instead. Pork belly is what my mum used when she cooked this dish but I’ve added some pork shoulder to have more lean meat in this recipe. I also love the strong taste of shallots and garlic in this dish and that’s why the amount in the recipe is quite substantial. You can reduce it if you find it too strong for your liking.


  • 800 g pork belly
  • 200 g pork shoulder
  • 500 g small onions
  • 250 g garlic
  • 100 g dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 750 g bamboo shoots
  • 2 to 3 Tbsp light tau cheo soya bean paste – to taste
  • 1 to 1½ Tbsp dark tau cheo soya bean paste – to taste
  • 1 Tbsp dark soya sauce
  • 1 Tbsp sugar – to taste


  1. Soak dried shiitake mushrooms in hot water until soften. Remove stems and keep water that was soaking the mushrooms.
  2. Grind garlic and small onions into fine paste (add some water if necessary).
  3. Add bamboo shoots into a pot of boiling water and leave it to boil until soften. Remove and slice into smaller pieces.
  4. Cut pork into smaller pieces and blanch in boiling water for a few minutes to remove impurities. Remove blanched pork and placed under cold running water to stop the cooking process.
  5. In a hot wok, add some oil and grounded small onions. Fry for a few minutes until fragrant.
  6. Add the minced garlic, fry and mix well. Add some more oil if too dry.
  7. Add the light and dark taucheo (soya bean paste) and fry until thoroughly mixed. Add more oil if necessary and fry until thoroughly cooked.
  8. Add the pork and mix well until thoroughly coated.
  9. Add dark soya sauce and mix well.
  10. Add mushroom water, plain water, mushrooms, bamboo shoots and mix everything together. Bring to boil and let it simmer for at least an hour or until meat is tender. Add some water if you want more gravy for your rice.
  11. Serve with sambal belacan.