I’m sorry to have made you hungry.
But how to not get hungry over this?
Slabs of moist pork with perfect crackling skin. I can almost forget about overindulgence in these fats, some say it’s collagen anyway so it’s ok right?
No it isn’t?
Coarse sea salt
Five spice powder
Onions, thinly sliced
Mirin or rice wine
White or apple vinegar
Use about 1 tbs of coarse sea salt, a tsp of fennel seeds, and a pinch of five spice powder per kg of meat.
The onions are for making a bed for the pork belly to sit on.
Ground the fennel seeds with half of the coarse sea salt in a pestle and mortar. Combine with the five spice powder.
Poke the skin of the pork belly all over with the tip of a sharp knife. Rub the spice mix all over the meat. Lay skin side up and rub the remaining salt over the skin. Let it stand in air for 3 hours, or in the fridge for 12 hours. If time is an issue, get a clean fan to blow the meat for an hour.
Preheat oven to 240 degC. Don’t worry, we will turn it down later.
Lay a bed of sliced onions, the length and width of the bed being that of the pork belly. Pour some mirin or rice wine over the onions. Place the pork belly on the bed of onions and bring then into the oven.
Turn the heat down to 170degC.
Let the pork belly roast for an hour to an hour and a half, depending on the size of the meat.
If you had found it difficult to poke the skin before roasting, you can poke it with a pin or toothpick 10mins after u started roasting. The skin is much more giving now.
After an hour or so, the meat is cooked. Now it’s time to crisp the skin! Turn the oven setting to top grill and increase the temperature to 220degC.
Take the meat out of the oven and sprinkle vinegar in the skin. Return to the hot oven and broil until ALL the skin is charred (yes, black!). Keep a watchful eye as this will not take long!
Carefully remove the meat from the oven. Let it stand for 15 mins.
Now use a serrated knife the scrape the skin to remove the black top, revealing the beautiful golden brown crackling skin below. Carefully bring the meat onto a chopping board and let it stand for another 15 mins.
Slice a serve.