How to Make Pork Floss At Home

Pork Floss is a must-have food in my mom’s kitchen. It has a long shelf life, is easy to preserve at room temperature, and is compatible with many daily Vietnamese, Chinese, or Thai dishes. Some examples are Vietnamese xoi man (Savory sticky rice), Vietnamese baguette, porridge, rice balls, or cooked rice itself. Therefore, my childhood was closely associated with it, especially in the morning when my mom didn’t have much time to prepare breakfast. Even when I studied in Italy, she also sent me a few packages of pork floss and dried shrimp to ease my homesickness. Now I can make it on my own thanks to her recipe and several hours of research on the internet. Let me show you how to make pork floss at home in the Vietnamese style.

pork floss, chà bông, ruốc

What is Meat Floss and Pork Floss?

Meat floss, also known as “meat wool,” is a type of dried meat product that has been finely shredded and dehydrated. It is popular in several Asian cuisines, including Chinese, Thai, Indonesian, and Vietnamese. Meat floss is typically made from pork (pork floss), but it can also be made from beef (beef floss), chicken (chicken floss), or fish (salmon floss, snakehead fish floss, carp floss, etc.).

Meat floss is a long-lasting yet tasty ingredient in various dishes and snacks. It can be sprinkled on top of rice, sticky rice, porridge, and noodles to add a savory flavor and a fluffy texture to the dishes. Besides, it can be used as a filling for sandwiches, pastries, and buns. In addition to its savory applications, in China, Vietnam, Taiwan, and other places, people also use meat floss as a topping for desserts and pastries.

Among all types of Meat Floss, Pork Floss is the most common and has the most diverse culinary applications. You can easily find it in Asian grocery stores or specialty food shops. It’s also easy to make with a bit of patience. Let’s do it.

Ingredients

The ingredients for making pork floss are very basic: you need pork tenderloin without fat, some spices, and condiments such as fish sauce or soy sauce, salt, pepper, annatto oil, sugar, and a pinch of curcumin powder. You should use pork tenderloin because this type of meat is lean and low in fat, which helps your pork floss last longer.

How to Make Pork Floss

Step 1. Preparation

  • Cut meat into large pieces and remove excess fat.
  • Boil the meat with 2-3 cups of water and a pinch of salt until it is cooked, which takes about 20-30 minutes. Skim off the foam from the top of the boiling broth to keep it clear.

Step 2. Shredding Pork the First Time

  • Marinate the cooked meat with a mixture of 4 tablespoons of fish sauce (if you can’t eat fish sauce, replace it with 4 tablespoons of soy sauce or 1 tablespoon of salt), 1 tablespoon of sugar (you can use brown sugar for better color), 2 teaspoons of cashew oil (optional), 1 teaspoon of salt, a pinch of turmeric powder, and a pinch of pepper. Mix well and let the meat rest to absorb the spices for about 10-15 minutes.
  • After resting, continue to stir-fry the pork tenderloin in a saucepan with a little meat broth (1/2 cup) and stir-fry until the broth completely evaporates.
  • Then, let the pork rest for about 5 minutes to cool down, and use a pestle and mortar to pound and shred it. You can also use a fork to do so.
pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc

Step 3. Shredding Pork the Second Time

  • After shredding, continue to stir-fry the shredded pork with the remaining broth until the meat is dry and firm. Add the broth slowly, little by little (1/2 cup at a time), stir-frying until it dries up. Repeat this process until the broth is used up.
pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc
  • Continue pounding and tearing the meat to your satisfaction. Super fluffy floss is perfect for making desserts and pastries, while less fluffy floss, which is less dry, is more appropriate for savory dishes like sticky rice, porridge, or congee. There are many tools to help you with this step, from a handy pestle and mortar to a hand mixer. With a hand mixer, beat the floss for 10 minutes or until it reaches your desired level of fluffiness.

Step 4. Drying Pork Floss

  • Finally, put the floss on the stove and stir over low heat until it becomes dry. Another method is to dry it in an oven or air fryer. Set the oven with air circulation or the air fryer at 100°C (212°F) and dry the floss for 10 minutes. Remember to place only a thin layer of floss on a baking tray to ensure it dries evenly and quickly.
  • When the pork floss is completely dry, turn off the stove and let it cool. Store it in a sealed jar or box, either in the refrigerator or at room temperature.
pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc

Storing Pork Floss

In fact, you can store your pork floss either in the fridge or at room temperature for 3-4 months. However, I used to make a mistake: I kept it in the fridge and didn’t return it to the fridge after eating. Because I thought it was also okay to leave it at room temperature, I left it on the kitchen countertop. After that, my pork floss quickly developed mold. This can be explained by the fact that pork floss in the fridge can absorb moisture. When it’s at room temperature, bacteria have the chance to multiply, leading to quick mold growth on the pork floss.

Therefore, keep in mind that you should choose only one storage method: either in the fridge or at room temperature. Transferring room-temperature pork floss to the fridge is safe. In contrast, transferring pork floss from the fridge to your room is not recommended.

Making Pork Floss is simple, but it requires your patience to achieve the best result. In return, you’ll get safe, umami-rich, and preservative-free pork floss for your family. Give it a try!

pork floss, chà bông, ruốc

Homemade Pork Floss

Yield: 4
Cook Time: 2 hours 30 minutes
Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

Pork Floss lasts long, is easy to preserve at room temperature, and compatible with many daily Vietnamese, Chinese or Thai dishes.

Ingredients

Pork

  • 600g (21 oz) pork tenderloin & a pinch of salt

Marinade

Instructions

Step 1. Preparation

  • Cut meat into large pieces and remove excess fat. Boil the meat with 2-3 cups of water & a pinch of salt until cooked, about 20-30 minutes. Skim off the foam on top of the boiling broth to keep the broth clear.pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc
  • Beside using regular pot, you can also use pressure cooker or instant pot to shorten cooking time to 15 minutes.

Step 2. Shredding Pork the First Time

  • Marinate the cooked meat with a mixture of 4 tablespoons fish sauce (if you can’t eat fish sauce, replace it with 4 tbsp of soy sauce or 1 tbsp of salt), 1 tbsp sugar (you can use brown sugar for a better color), 2 tsp cashew oil (optional), 1 tsp salt, turmeric powder (1 pinch), pepper (1 pinch). Mix well and let the meat rest to absorb the spices for about 10-15 minutes.pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc
  • After resting, continue to stir-fry the pork tenderloin in the a saucepan with a little meat broth (1/2 cup) and stir-fry until the broth completely evaporates.pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc
  • Then, let the pork rest for about 5 minutes to cool down and use a pestle and mortar to pound and tear it. You can also use a folk to do so.pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc

Step 3. Shredding Pork the Second Time

  • After tearing, continue to stir-fry the shredded pork with the remaining broth until the meat is dry and firm. Add the broth slowly, little by little (1/2 cup a time), stir fry until dried. Repeat until the broth runs out. .pork floss making, chà bông, ruốcStir-fry...pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc]until the broth evaporates completely.
  • Continue pounding and tearing the meat to your satisfaction. Super fluffy floss is perfect for making desserts and pastries, while less fluffy floss, which is less dry, is more appropriate for savory dishes like sticky rice, porridge or congee. There are many tools to help you do this step, from handy pestle and mortar to hand mixer. With hand mixer, beat the floss in 10 minutes or until the floss is as fluffy as you like.pork floss making, chà bông, ruốc

Step 4. Drying Pork Floss

  • Finally, put the floss on the stove and stir with low heat until dry to dry the floss. Another method is to dry it in an oven or air fryer. Set the oven with air circulation or air fryer at 100C (212F) and dry the floss in 10 minutes. Remember to set only a thin layer of floss on a baking tray to make it dry more evenly and quickly.pork floss, chà bông, ruốc
  • When pork floss is totally dry, turn off the stove, let it cool. Store it in a sealed jar/box, in the refrigerator or at room temperature, all good.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 6 Serving Size: 50g
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 230

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