September 8th, 2010
Pork Belly is the stomach of a pig and is generally used to make bacon (the Chinese and Koreans use it for other recipes). Pork belly is also very good when oven roasted or barbecued, the fat gives the meat a great flavour and it’s a cheap cut of meat.
Roast pork belly recipe:
My pork belly was a fairly small piece, about 1 lb in weight. You need to be careful when cooking pork and ensure that any juice flowing from it, when cooked, is clear and without blood, or it can make you ill.
Preheat you oven to maximum and score the skin (going into the fat slightly) at 1 cm intervals. Rub some sea salt into the scores and sprinkle on some ground black pepper. For a piece of pork belly like mine, it needs to be roasted for about 45 minutes to an hour – for a larger piece of about 3 lb in weight you might need to cook it for as long as two and a half hours. When roasting, allow the skin to puff up and start turning to crackling at a high heat for the first 30 minutes and once it has started you can turn the oven down to 200º C. When the crackling looks good, check that the juice runs clear and allow the meat to stand for at least 10 minutes before serving. For a large piece I’d let it stand for 30 minutes to allow it reabsorb some moisture – it makes it taste better (wrap it up to stop it loosing too much heat).
Serve with mashed potatoes and vegetables. You could also make gravy with any juices left in your oven dish – see my gravy recipe from 22nd August, 2010.