{recipe} Momofuku-Inspired Bo Ssam, aka Korean Slow-Roasted Pork, with Ginger Scallion Sauce

Can we talk about David Chang for a minute? He kind of seems like a loose cannon, or maybe even a huge jerk, even, but the recipes he magnanimously shares with the public almost always turn out to be among my favorites. For example, his short ribs easily beat Thomas Keller’s. So when I saw his Bo Ssam recipe in the New York Times this week, I knew I had to try it immediately. I was dying to taste this sweet and salty, crackly, crispy, falling apart pork roast. Since I wanted to make it for lunch and it takes 6 hours in the oven, that meant setting an alarm for 5:30 AM to put it in the oven, then going back to bed. But I knew that David wouldn’t let me down–and he didn’t.

Of course, the original recipe was a little bit too fussy for me, so I have simplified for all of our sake’s. There’s not much to it, but damn, this thing is irresistible. If you have the time to marinate the night before then sit around waiting for this thing to cook, you can easily make it without too much fuss. He recommends it as the filling for a lettuce wrap, but I served it with rice, his recommended scallion-ginger sauce, kimchi, sambal oelek, and a kale and cabbage salad with miso dressing. And for the record, I don’t make my own kimchi, but I am extremely impressed by people who do, mostly because it makes your fridge stink so much, so if that kind of thing interests you maybe David Lebovitz or Jaden Hair can give you an idea of what you’re in for.

Despite his personal issues and lack of respect for my hometown, I remain, as ever, an unabashed devotee of the Chang-inspired recipe.

Oh, and if you think David Chang’s original recipe with all of its bells and whistles will be better than my version, well you are probably right, so you should totally try it.

Recipe: Momofuku Inspired Bo Ssam, aka Korean Slow-Roasted Pork


  • 1 whole boneless pork shoulder, about 8-10 lbs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup + 1 Tblsp kosher salt
  • 7 Tblsp brown sugar
  • Put pork in a bowl. Mix white sugar with 1 cup kosher salt well. Rub sugar/salt mixture all over the pork and into the cavities as much as possible. Cover with plastic and refrigerate overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 300. Remove pork from bowl and discard juices and excess sugar/salt mixture. Put pork, fat side up, in a roasting pan with a rack. Cook at 300 for about 3-4 hours, basting every hour with juices.
  • Lower heat to 250. Flip the roast over so the fat side is down and cook 2-3 more hours, for a total of 6 hours cooking time. Turn oven off without opening it and let pork sit for 30-60 minutes.
  • In a bowl, combine remaining tablespoon of salt with the brown sugar. Rub all over outside of pork. (It should be cool enough to do this with your hands by this point.) Turn heat to 500 and cook until a crackly crust forms, about 10-15 minutes.
  • Serve immediately with rice, kimchi, sambal oelek, lettuce or salad, and ginger scallion sauce (recipe follows.)

Recipe: Ginger-Scallion Sauce


  • 2 bunches scallions, cleaned and chopped (white part and most of green part)
  • 1/4 to 1/3 cup grated fresh ginger
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 tsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp any kind of vinegar – I used white wine vinegar
  • large pinch salt


  • Combine all ingredients together a few hours before serving, so the flavors can meld together. Serve alongside pork roast.

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3 Responses

  1. Melissa says:

    The receipe featured in this post is not the one from the NYTimes, which I think is better as you cook the meat for 6 hours at 300 degrees, let it rest, cover with sugar, then put in a 500 degree oven which really carmalizes the sugar and makes the skin taste like candy….I do not like the scallion sauce so I served the pork with tortillas, mango sausa, guacamole and greek yogurt, it was amazing…

    • Karen says:

      @Melissa thanks for the comment! As I mentioned in the post, I changed the recipe a little bit after trying it a few different ways. I found that in my oven, 6 hours at 300 degrees made the pork too dry. Your sides sound tasty!!