Thai Five Spice combines the rich, savory spices of Thai cuisine. Thai Five Spice actually derives from China and was to be the base for this rub, but I accidentally grabbed my bottle of Thai Five Spice instead of my bottle of Chinese Five Spice. So rather than dump out an entire bowl of freshly mixed spices, I decided to just run with it and I’ll do something else down the road with Chinese Five Spice.
Is there really a difference between Thai and Chinese Five Spice?
Chinese Five Spice is a traditional blend of the five most popular Chinese spices, used primarily in Chinese cuisine but it is also used in Asian and Arabic cooking. This sweet and pungent spice can be used with fatty meats such as pork, duck or goose, in red cooking recipes, or added to the breading for fried foods.
Five spice is used in recipes for Cantonese roasted duck, as well as beef stew. It’s used as a marinade for Vietnamese broiled chicken.
While there are many variants, the most common mix of Chinese five spice is Star anise, Cloves, Chinese Cinnamon, Sichuan pepper and Fennel seeds. Other recipes may contain anise seed or ginger root, nutmeg, turmeric, cardamom pods, licorice, Sichuan pepper or Mandarin orange peel to name a few.
Although this mixture is used in restaurant cooking, many Chinese households do not use it in day-to-day cooking. In Hawaii, some restaurants place a shaker of the spice on each patron’s table.
The Thai Spice Blend I am using has the following ingredients: sesame seeds, paprika, coriander, garlic, onion, cilantro leaf, basil, red pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg, natural shrimp flavor and lemon oil.
I just added a few other ingredients to my rub, gave the pork a good rub down and allowed 12 hours for these spices to soak into the pork, then turned my slow cooker on high, went about my daily routine, then took a nap a few hours later I woke up and Holy Guacamole!
What I made was not only extremely easy to make using a slow cooker, but was so delicious and fork tender, it was gone before I had a chance to prepare a side dish!
G O N E ……….G O N E ……….G O N E ……….
3-4 lbs Pork loin, sliced 1/2 inch thick
1/4 c brown sugar
2 1/2 tsp Thai five spice
1 tsp anise seed
1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
1 Tbsp Coriander
2 1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
3 garlic cloves; finely minced
1 large onion; cut into thin slices