Heat up 1 pot of water and allow it to boil. Add in the pork collar and scald it in the boiling water for approximately 3-4 minutes. This can help to remove the impurities and excess oils from the pork. Rinse and drain well.
In another deeper pot, add approx. 1.2L of water together with all Seasonings I. Allow it to boil before blanching the sea cucumber for approx. 2 minutes.
Drain the sea cucumber well and cut it into thick slices
With the same pot of water, add in the blanched pork collar from Step 1 and allow the pork to be cooked in it for approx. 1 hour. Make sure the water is sufficient to fully submerge the pork.
Remove the pork and place it in a smaller heatproof bowl or pot together with the mushrooms (if using). Add in all the Seasonings II together with around 900ml-1L of water from the pork cooking broth from the previous step. Make sure your bowl or pot is deep enough to accommodate this volume of broth after adding in all the seasonings as well.
Cover the smaller bowl or pot and place it in a larger wok for steaming.
Make sure you add in enough water to allow the pork to be steamed for a further 2 hours
Remove the heatproof pot/bowl and put it directly over the flame (make sure your pot can be used to put over the naked flame directly !). On low heat, allow the pork to be cooked for 10 minutes. Taste and adjust accordingly with more water, sugar or dark soya sauce. Add in the sea cucumber and tapioca starch. Allow both the pork and sea cucumber to be braised for a further 15-20 minutes for the sea cucumber to turn even softer, but not to the extent of disintegration.
Remove from flame and serve with some fresh lettuce as desired.
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