'Bak Kwa' (meat jerky) strongly reminds me of Chinese New Year in Malaysia. It is during this time that the streets in Chinatown will be extremely smoky as various stalls would be busy preparing them to cope with the demand. It has been increasingly popular to present these as gifts during the festive season. Seriously, 'Bak Kwa' is extremely desirable due to its amazing taste, not to mention the chewy texture. The combination of flavours of the five spice powder, soy sauce, oyster sauce and fermented tofu along with a thin coat of honey makes it lips smacking good.
I love chewing 'Bak Kwa' and keeping it in my mouth longer then intended just so I can savour the incredible taste for a longer period of time. Just like how there is bacon chewing gum, I secretly wish that 'Bak Kwa' chewing gum would follow suit! This alone will give you an idea of how delicious this treat is.
Due to the intense labour of barbecuing the meat and the festive season, 'Bak Kwa' can be really pricey. So, here is a recipe to prepare your own in the comfort of your home. Make it slightly sweeter or saltier if that is your preference. There is no hard and fast rule about it.
Bak Kwa is also known as: Chinese BBQ Meat Jerky肉干Long Yoke Korn
Mix all ingredients (excluding honey and hot water) to minced meat. Once minced meat is well mixed, the texture of the meat should be sticky.
Roll meat flat on a piece of baking paper. Heat up the oven to 180 degrees Celsius and bake flattened meat for 15 minutes.
Remove juice extracted from the meat and turn meat over. Bake for another 15 minutes. Transfer meat onto a new piece of baking paper. Apply the mixture of honey and hot water on the surface of the meat. Bake for 5-10 minutes on a higher rack in the oven.Turn meat over to apply honey and water mixture. Bake for a further 5-10 minutes.
Allow to cool and cut into the desired size. Grilled Bak Kwa is best eaten within 3 days. It should be kept in the fridge up to 5 days. Bak Kwa should be heated up in a pan, microwave or on a grill again before consuming.