The pork belly boom is here to stay. Every chef and establishment has a version of the melt in your mouth goodness, from appetizer to entree, usually braised, with melted collagens and tender meat forming a salacious, mouthwatering experience. Come to think of it, why would anyone want the pork belly boom to go anywhere?
This crispy pork belly recipe maintains a chicharrone like crispness on the top layer of fat while infusing the body of the pork belly with savory goodness. There’s also a nice mild heat that runs through the broth, just enough to get your attention, but not enough to demand real estate in your nasal cavities. As always, adjust seasonings to your tastes and experiment with ingredients that might better suit your household.
- 2-3 lbs pork belly
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 cups chicken stock
- ⅔ cup orange juice
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp grated ginger
- 2 tbsp minced shallot
- 2 tbsp soy sauce
- 6 whole red chili peppers (Thai or similar)
- 1 tbsp kosher salt, plus add'l to taste
- black pepper to taste
- Dry (with paper towels) and score the top layer of fat on the pork belly with crossing diagonals forming approximately ½" diamonds.
- Rub 1 tbsp salt (or to taste) into score marks and on all surfaces of pork belly. Apply fresh ground on top of pork belly to taste. Allow to rest in refrigerator for 2-4 hours.
- Heat oven to 220ºF.
- In a heavy dutch oven, over medium-high heat, heat sesame oil and brown the pork belly on all sides. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Add in garlic, ginger and shallot and cook until aroma begins to release, approximately 1-2 minutes.
- Add chicken stock to deglaze, orange juice, brown sugar, soy sauce and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil. Taste and adjust seasonings as desired (This broth will be reduced for serving, so flavors will be more concentrated at finish).
- Add pork belly and allow to simmer in hot broth for about 5 minutes.
- Cover and place into oven . Allow to braise 3-6 hours, checking and basting periodically until desired level of tenderness is achieved (tender but not falling apart).
- Increase oven temp to 425ºF and remove lid for 15-20 minutes, or until top of pork belly has achieved a golden, crispy texture.
- Remove pork belly from braising liquid. Place dutch oven on stove top and reduce braising liquid to desired consistency (approximately 1 1-2 cups of broth left after reducing).
- Cut pork belly into serving portions, serve in bowl, with reduced broth and sauteed vegetables of choice. Enjoy, and Cheers, my friends!
Crispy Pork Belly Recipe