Roast pork belly is an eternal favourite and staple at freo world kitchen. It is a cheap and extremely tasty cut of meat. If you follow this step-by-step guide, it is also impossible to mess up! Roasting the pork low and slow, then turning the grill up high for crispy skin, is near fool-proof. There really is nothing better than a piece of tender and juicy pork belly – it can be the centrepiece of so many dishes: roast dinner, noodle soup, Asian pork-and-rice, sandwiches, you name it, it can be done!
Pork belly is so much easier to cook well than chicken, beef, lamb – whatever other roasts there are. The fat helps to keep it moist, and the flavour is out of this world.
Turn your oven on at 150 degrees Celcius. Wash and pat your piece of meat dry. Score the skin in 1 cm lines. Salt the skin and rub the meat side in your preferred spices. Here are some suggestions:
Chinese: 5-spice powder rub all over and sprinkle cumin seeds liberally on the skin. For the roasting pan, pour in some soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, sesame oil and add some star anise pieces and spring onion.
Thai: Chinese 5-spice powder rub all over. For the roasting pan, pour in some soy sauce, Shaoxing wine, fish sauce and some star anise pieces and spring onion.
German/Danish/European: rub the skin with fennel, cracked black pepper and push in some bay leaves in the scored lines.
Note: These are just some ideas – what flavours do you like? What cuisine are you cooking? What have you got in the fridge/pantry? Don’t be afraid to experiment – slow-roasted pork belly is very forgiving!
Put the pork belly in the roasting pan (with a splash of water) and put it in the oven. Cook at 150 degrees for approx. 2,5 – 3 hours. This length of time renders most of the fat and leaves it tender and juicy.
After roasting, turn up the grill to HIGH. Make sure the skin is close to the grill (high up in the oven). This is how you will get perfectly crackling every time – trust us! It often happens that the skin won’t crackle evenly, so make sure you keep a good eye on what is happening. If a particular spot is burning/going black, cover it with alu foil. If you do happen to get burnt spots, just use a sharp knife to scrape them at the end (problem solved).
And you’re done!