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I love Chinese barbecued pork and have made it using a mix that I purchse at the Asian market which is really good. However, I don't think you are really cooking when you use mixes and I always wanted to make this from scratch. Because Cooks Illustrated has really good recipes to me, I wanted to try their's and boy was I glad I did. This pork tasted even better than some Chinese recipes I have gone to. I mean this is the real thing. It is a few steps, but it is so worth it especially if you like to cook like I do. I usually like to tweak recipes to make them my own, but there was nothing I could do to tweak on this one that would enhance it. At least nothing I could think of because it was just perfect as is.