Chinese Roast Pork Belly

What’s The Dish?
Slow roasted Chinese pork belly with crispy crackling is something my dad used to cook at home and now I love to make as it’s one of my all time favourite dishes! It’s great for entertaining as it’s not too labour intensive and you can serve everything on one huge platter so people can help themselves.

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Verdict (Recipe Below)
This recipe is pretty much foolproof and turns out great every time which is one of the reasons I love it so much! The marinade (ideally done overnight) ensures the meat is super flavourful and because the main cooking temperature is low and slow, it’s almost impossible to over cook.

I’ve shared this recipe with many of my friends and people always ask how to make it on Instagram etc. so thought it would be useful to upload on here!

The recipe below will serve around 5-6 people but you can also do this with a slightly smaller piece of pork (about 1kg) to serve around 4, just shorten the cooking times slightly.

Ingredients
1 x 1.5 kg (3 lb) piece slab of belly pork with the rind on (un-scored) and bones removed, sourced from a good butcher

1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon of black peppercorns
1 tablespoon of sea salt flakes
2 teaspoons five-spice powder
2 small dried chillies

4 teaspoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 teaspoon Oriental chilli oil containing shrimp paste (or chilli olive oil if you can’t get this)

1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1 quantity steamed rice with French greens beans or broccoli

Method
1. Spike the skin of the pork with a fine skewer or sharp thin bladed knife as many times as you can, going through into the fat but not so deep that you go into the flesh. Then pour a kettle full of hot water over the skin, leave it to drain and then dry it off well.

2. Grind the spices up then turn the pork flesh-side up on a tray and rub the flesh all over with the spice mixture. Set it aside somewhere cool for 8 hours or overnight.

3. Preheat the oven to 220°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6. Turn the pork skin-side up and place it on a rack resting on top of a roasting tin of water (ideally the roasting tin should be not much bigger than the slab of pork). Lightly oil and rub in plenty of salt into the skin. Roast the pork for 25 minutes, then lower the oven temperature to 160°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4 and roast it for a further 2 hours, topping up the water in the roasting tin now and again if necessary.

4. Increase the oven temperature once more to 230°C/450°F/ Gas Mark 8 and continue to roast the pork for a further 20 to 25 minutes or so until the crackling is hard all over (be careful not to burn the crackling). This can be finished off under the grill for a few minutes or so if needed.

5. In a shallow dish, mix together the soy sauce, vinegar and chilli oil. Add the cooked pork, crackling-side up, cover with tin foil and leave to rest for 10 minutes.

6. Toast the sesame seeds in a small non-stick pan and then stir into the rice when cooked, with a squeeze of lemon. Spoon the rice and greens on to a large warmed serving platter. Slice and thickly dice the pork and arrange on top of the rice. Drizzle over the meat juices from the dish and serve.

More Info
Original recipe source that this was adapted from: http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/1511724/crisp-chinese-roast-pork 

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