Thursday, June 24, 2010

PORK BELLY. Slow roasted and seared.

PORK BELLY...ooooh the possibilities...
cured for 24hrs, slow roasted and seared to order...

a delicious amuse bouche...the perfect bite dipped in maple syrup...
a tasty appetizer will keep your guests wanting more...
sliced and seared for amazing bacon and eggs...

i was completely amazed and fascinated by my first slab of pork belly. #1 i never put 2 and 2 together and figured out this is really just bacon in the raw. #2 i had no idea that the meat enveloped by all that fat is like the best pork chop i've ever tasted.


so far i think i've only scratched the surface on the preparation and consuming of pork belly. i think i like it most in the morning seared to order with a little maple syrup, but also it's pretty darn tasty wrapped in butter lettuce with a little chili garlic sauce.


as a matter o' fact i have one in the oven right now!...i'm trying Jamie Oliver's recipe. it's meant more for a family dinner pork roast with gravy type dinner...of coarse i'm the only one in the house that will be eating it. it looks like i'll be eatin' roast pork belly for a few days
every bite is different. as you can see in the photo above this is one of the cuts from the lean part. this is an example of the delicious pork chop bite i mentioned. i must admit i was a bit worried about the fat content, but quickly got over that when i took my first bite. it's hard to describe. you can't just take a nibble...you have to take a big bite and get the whole experience of the moist meat, the tender fat and the crispy skin all at once.

on with the recipe

there are so many ways to prepare this lovely slab of pork i was confused so i ended up throwing alot of ideas together and came up with something pretty darn tasty...and fairly easy for the first time belly chef.
buy yourself a 2-2 1/2lb. slab of belly with skin...no bones
i like to wash and dry it completely with paper towels
mix 1/4 cup kosher salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
1-2 tsp fresh ground pepper

completely cover the belly with the mixture. place skin side down in non-reactive container just big enough to fit and cover the flesh side with more salt/sug. mixture. cover and let sit in fridge for at least 24 hours. this is the all important curing process. after about 12 hrs you can pour some of the liquid out of the container. i did. after 24 hrs remove and wash remaining salt off under cool water. dry completely. take a sharp sharp knife and cut slits through the skin but not to the flesh. i cut about every inch or so.

place the pork in a roasting dish covered with tinfoil and push foil up against the sides as shown in small photo below. this is to prevent the sides from getting too brown and it also keeps the bottom meat part cooking in it's own fat..kind of confit-like.
put in 225F degree oven for 5-6 hours.

about 3 hours in i basted the sides and the cut slits with some Soy Vay Hoisin Garlic Sauce. Teriyaki or BBQ sauce would work great to. do this every hour or so until you think it done...the flesh is fork tender and it has a little glaze going on the sides. remove from oven and let cool as is. when cool enough put it in the fridge for at least a few hours. this makes for easy slicing and you can keep it there for the week as you whittle away at the slab unless you decide to consume the whole thing with some pork belly lovin' friends.

now what you want to do is slice off about an inch thick piece and sear that on all sides in a very hot pan. i love to use my new SCANPAN. it's non-stick and can withstand high heat. don't forget to sear the skin top side. you'll have to hold it up with your tongs. it's worth it. serve as is and please try dipping it in a little of your favorite syrup...maple, blueberry even caramel...hmmmmm. the perfect bite will change your pork lovin' world.




the picture to the right is an example of how i put it in the oven. there was so much meat showing that i didn't want it to be exposed to the heat for the full 6 hours so i crunched the aluminum up around it.









15 comments:

Taylor said...

Wow that pork belly looks amazing! Great post

Mickle in NZ said...

Thank you for a porkbelly recipe for single folk, like myself. I have two pieces of porkbelly lurking in the freezer - now I know how to prepare cook them!

Sippity Sup said...

Oh my! GREG

Tiffany said...

Wow, this looks delish! Good job :)

ChefAmyJ said...

I looked all over for a recipe for glazed pork belly that was crispy yet unctious. Like i've had at several LA restaurants, the best being laurel tavern. None of the recipes or pix did anything for me until I saw yours!
Your final pic was exactly what i was looking for!!

I'm a chef and caterer and run an underground dinner club in LA. I did a 7 course chocolate underground dinner for 85 guests in February. i used your techniques and did maple cocoa glazed pork belly skewers! They were A-MAZ-ING and the hit of the dinner.

Had to make a few changes. I added cocoa powder to the initial rub(yum!)

And i did have to cook it way longer. more like 9 hours. And i had to cut off the top layer because it was too hard. maybe because i had bought my pork belly at the Asian Market so maybe the quality wasn't as good, or as fresh?

Then i cut up the chunks, minus the very hard not edible top skin layer. And then deep fried the pieces for a few seconds, and then brushed them with a maple cocoa glaze. crazy good.

Couldn't have done it without you!

Thanks!!!!!

Jules and Ruby said...

Chefamyj...WOW....maple cocoa glazed pork belly...yummmm! so glad you liked the skewer deal. yours sounds over the top delicious. you're right the skin can be tough sometimes. i think it has to be fairly dry to get a good crisp on it...or for presentation purposes i guess you could torch the end of each piece to get it to crisp up, but then again just omitting it sounds easier for a crowd of 85. thanks for the report. hope you stop by again...jules

Tara said...

Look great. I am a big fan of Thomas Keller's method. Best pork belly ever! But I am def trying this next time.

Jules and Ruby said...

Yara...i think i'll try Thomas Kellar's recipe next time. thanks for the heads up and thanks for stopping by

Jules and Ruby said...

WOOPS...i meant TARA

Dee said...

If you want nice crunchy crackling, score the rind with a sharp knife and pour boiling water over the rind (you are not sitting the pork in the water just pour over and let it run off)this helps tenderize the rind a bit.
Then rub salt into the rind and wrap in paper towel and set aside for 30 minutes (you can change paper towel if there is a lot of moisture coming out) on the kitchen counter this will let the pork get closer to room temp so will have less shrinkage. Roast as you would normally. Super crunchy crackling.

Jules and Ruby said...

DEE...i'll definitely have to try this. i might buy a big piece of BELLY with the bone in next time to see what the difference is...just out of curiosity, but i'll still try the hot water trick....thanks for the tip

klare said...

This will be my first time cooking pork belly which will be a part of our "Pork Fest Party". I just want to confirm that I leave it uncovered while it roasts.

Jules and Ruby said...

hi Klare...yes...uncovered. also... you might want to have a look at my post on Jamie Oliver's pork belly recipe as well. i've done that one at least a dozen times. i just did THIS cured/roasted recipe again , but i haven't posted about it yet. i put apples and brown sugar around the edges of the roasting pork belly with onions underneath...YUM. i'll try to get the post out before the weekend. i hope it turns out fabulous for you. thanks for stopping by

JuJuBean said...

Assuming I use some of this for amuse bouche, is there a good way to store what's left-over? Thanks in advance. This recipe looks delicious.

Jules and Ruby said...

hi Jujubean...whenever i make pork belly i ALWAYS have left over...i'm the only one eating it...LOL. it's ALL mine. anyway...i like to wrap it in parchment, then in tupperware with a loose (ajar) lid for the first day or so. then close it up tight. i sometimes have it in there for a week until it's all gone.. this helps keep a crispy skin if thats what you started with. this was one of my first pork belly recipes and i hadn't mastered the crispy skin yet, but i have quite a few other pork belly posts if you want to combine crispy skin and maple syrup action. hope that helps...jules

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