Braised Pork Spare Ribs with Taro and Coconut Sauce, Chinese Clay Pot Style | Hong Kong Food Blog with Recipes, Cooking Tips mostly of Chinese and Asian styles | Taste Hong Kong

Braised Pork Spare Ribs with Taro and Coconut Sauce, Chinese Clay Pot Style

Braised Pork Spare Ribs with Taro and Coconut Sauce, Chinese Clay Pot Style

Whenever I’m in the mood to crave for a warming, satisfying dish, I’ll take into account clay pot dishes. Among choices at the moment, my can of coconut milk, sitting in the cabinet, seconded me to make one with a thick sauce.

Yes, it is this clay pot dish 芋頭排骨煲 containing a blanket of white sauce coating both the pork and taro, which is creamy and flavor-packed.

Deep frying may be the quickest, also our most traditional way to prepare the pork and taro for braising, but it is not the only way. I pan-fried them, with about two spoons of oil, for a couple of minutes, when the sides were lightly browned.

Either way, the taro slices had to be fried before simmering. Even I did so, I had to be gentle in stirring and turning them or otherwise they would have been broken down into tiny pieces. What I mean is, we want taro slices than puree in this dish.

Braising Pork Spare Ribs with Taro and Coconut Sauce in Clay Pot

The clay pot not only helped keep the foods warm, it also seemed to have ‘freezed’ those hot motions – the sauce continued to sizzle and bubble as I removed the pot from my kitchen to dinning room (though they subsided while I was ready to shoot).

Which means, it is a dish that really warms.

Pan Frying Taro Slices in Wok
Pan Frying Pork Spare Ribs in Wok

  • Ingredients
  • 200g pork spare ribs, diced
  • 300g taro
  • 3 shallots, thinly sliced
  • 4 sprigs spring (green) onion, cut into ~3 cm length
  • ~1/3 tsp salt, for marinading taro
  • ~ 2 tbsp oil
  • Sauce
  • 250 ml coconut milk
  • 1 1/2 cup water
  • 1/3 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp ground white pepper
  • Marinades for pork
  • 1/3 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp sugar
  • 1/8 tsp ground white pepper
  • 1/4 tsp yellow (Shaoxing) wine
  • 1/4 tsp corn starch
  • 1/4 tsp ginger juice

Braising Pork Spare Ribs with Taro and Coconut Sauce in Clay Pot


Wash pork ribs clean, pat dry, and marinade for no less than 15 minutes.

Peel taro, wash it clean, pat dry and cut into slices, about 3/4 cm thick. Uncooked taro can cause itchy skin, so wear hand gloves when peeling.

Heat oil in wok over medium heat, pan-fry sliced taro until turned slightly golden, 2 to 3 minutes for each side. Transfer taro to a dish, marinade with salt and set aside; saute shallot and fry spare ribs for 1 to 2 minutes until they are lightly seared (to save time, just pan-fry pork and taro together if your wok is large enough, but you also need to remove the taro from wok before braising the ribs).

When pork is seared, drop in spring onions (reserve some for garnishing). Pour in 1 1/2 cup water and about 1/3 of the the can of coconut milk. Stir well and bring it to a simmer. Cover wok and turn heat to the lowest.

I simmered the spare ribs for about 40 minutes when the meat was just tendered and about 1/2 cup of the sauce was left. You may want to check it a couple of minutes earlier to make sure the liquid is not drying out, otherwise add some hot water.

Put in reserved taro, remaining coconut milk, salt and ground white pepper. Gently stir and turn to assemble well.

Transfer all in ingredients, including the sauce, in wok to a pot for serving. Over a moderate heat, let the sauce simmer, bubble and reduce for a minute or so. Garnish with green onion. Serve hot.


Braising Pork Spare Ribs with Taro and Coconut Sauce in Clay Pot

For braising, a heavy-based pot may perform better than a wok. I used the same wok for both frying and braising because it facilitated me flipping and turning the taro slices in the sauce without breaking them.

It is also common to cook taro with chicken in this same sauce, which in Chinese is called 芋頭雞煲.

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  1. Smoky Wok (Jen)

    This sounds so delicious!! Must be especially fragrant with the coconut milk 🙂 & I love claypot dishes! good idea to fry the taro before cooking in the claypot too.

  2. TasteHongKong

    @Smoky Wok (Jen),
    Indeed, clay pot dishes is one of the best treats for cool seasons. Thanks!

  3. tigerfish

    Yes the coconut milk must have made this extra fragrant. And yes, aromatizing certain ingredients really do bring differences in a dish.

  4. lena

    adding coconut milk in this dish is new to me and i’m enjoying learning this as well..this looks really creamy tasty!

  5. food-4tots

    Coconut milk is great for both cooking and baking. I also started to include them in my baking now but your way is new to me. Your dish looks so flavourful! Must give it a try soon.

  6. Angie@Angiesrecipes

    I could only imagine how delicious those taro are going to taste braised with rich creamy coconut milk!

  7. TasteHongKong

    Yes, my kitchen was filled with flavors while preparing this.

    My pleasure!

    Yes, give it a try and enjoy!

    Yes, the taro in this dish was kind of melt-in-the-mouth.

  8. Von

    I LOVE taro! My mum cooks a dish similar to this and it’s one of my favourite dishes 😉 We recently got a new clay pot so we’ve been using it a bit- I love using the clay pot because it makes food seem so much more exciting! haha…..And it keeps it warm longer 😀

  9. Jean from

    my favorite dish. smells like home =)

  10. Juliana

    Wow, the ribs with taro and coconut milk looks delicious, I never had this kind of dish…by the way, I posted taro chips based on your recipe 🙂
    Hope you have a great week ahead and thanks for this delicious recipe!

  11. noobcook

    I’m currently posting about claypot food too, new discovery for me and loving it. Love the coconut milk sauce, this meal looks very comforting and warming.

  12. kristy

    COOL! I’ve never thought of making this with cocnut milk. Must be soooo scrumptious. Oh boy, salivating already. haha…. Btw, I have some awards for you. Please feel free to hop over. thanks.
    Hope you’re having a fabulous week, dear.
    Regards, Kristy

  13. Lori

    I love coconut milk with just about anything. It always seems that it’s prepared with fish or chicken here though, rarely pork. Definitely something I’d like to try.

  14. Kali

    Anything with coconut is amazing. I’ve never heard of the claypot or how it works. Looks like it for sure created an amazing dish! I bet your house smelled amazing while cooking!

  15. kwiaciarnia wysyłkowa

    Hi, Neat post. There is a problem with your website in internet explorer, would test this… IE still is the market leader and a large portion of people will miss your great writing because of this problem.

  16. TasteHongKong

    @kwiaciarnia wysyłkowa,
    Thanks! And let me check it out.

    Hi Everyone,
    If you see any problem here via IE, please also let me know. Thanks!