Ngoh Hiang (Chinese Five-Spice Pork Roll)

After my last appearance on Rasa Malaysia, Bee and I started talking about another popular dish: Five-spice pork rolls wrapped in beancurd skins, a standard issue at festive meals for the Chinese in Singapore and Malaysia. Named after the Chinese five spice powder that gives the rolls their unique flavor, Ngoh Hiang (五香) (or Loh Bak, as it’s known in Malaysia), is another take on the pork sausage, if you will. A whole array of ingredients are stirred into a pound of fatty ground pork, which is then seasoned with the powder  and snugly wrapped before being first steamed, then pan-fried to a crisp.

Like any good Chinese dish, these rolls have their sub-cultural variations, depending on whether the cook was of a Teochew or Hokkien dialect. In my family’s case, it was a tale of culinary evolution and experimentation, marrying the traditions and differences from each dialect. For the full story, head over to Rasa Malaysia where I share my family’s Ngoh Hiang recipe!


  1. Oh my, I am just starting to be reacquainted with 5 spiced foods – I think I had too much of it in something and it was overwhelming, but now I seek it out and I am seeking out these incredible sounding rolls as I type this.

    • Yea, a little goes a long way with spices, especially heady mixes like five spice powder. I use just a teaspoon for a pound of pork in this recipe, and the notes ring through loud and clear. Hope you like it!

  2. Wow, what an amazing recipe! I wonder if I will be able to find the wrapping beancurd skins…

    worth searching for it… I guess won ton skins would change the recipe too much (I am tempted to try it, though)

    • Sally, in the West, beancurd skins can usually be found, pre-packed, in the frozen sections of Chinese grocery stores. They have a pale yellow and coarse textured appearance. You’re right that won ton skins would alter this recipe too much, but I say it’s worth a shot 😉

      • Well, my usual approach is to try to stick with the original as much as possible…

        A friend of mine happens to be in Dallas today, I will see if she can find it for me.. ooops, that would also pose a problem, they would thaw during the trip.

        I guess I’ll have to search in a Chinese market in Oklahoma City. They might have it. I really want to try this!

        Thanks for answering…

  3. Danielle, my friend brought me something, but now I don’t know if I can use it… She found it not in frozen form, but dried, in a very colorful package, written beancurd skins on it. They are yellowish, I haven’t opened the package, they seem a little brittle.

    do you think I can give them a try?????

    (I hope you still see this comment, as you posted lots of new articles already after this… 🙂

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