Sometimes there is no words to describe how delicious roasted pork belly taste. The 4 key things that I look for in a perfect roasted pork belly are these:
1) crispy pork skin
2) not too much fat layer under the skin
3) tender and juicy meat
4) just the right amount of salt
Call me picky (aren't we all picky when comes to certain things?), I yet to find a place that sells roasted pork belly that meets every single requirement that I look for.
As for the solution? Make it my own!
I found a recipe on this website http://www.noobcook.com/crispy-roast-pork-belly/ , which I based my "experiment" on.
Ingredients1 slab of pork belly (approximately 1.5lb)
2 tsp of salt
1/2 tbsp 5-spice powder
1/4 tbsp white pepper powder
Instructions (the words in red are copied verbatim from the website above, please refer to the site for complete original instructions)
1. Holding a small knife in a stabbing action, make short diagonal slits with the tip of the knife on the surface of the skin (but not cutting into the meat) at random.
2. Combine 1 tsp salt, 5-spice powder and white pepper in a small bowl. Rub the marinade all over the meat portion only. If any marinade gets on the skin, rub it off with a paper towel.
3. Rub the remaining 1 tsp salt on the skin. Place pork belly on a plate, uncovered, skin side up and let it marinade for a few hours or preferably overnight in the refrigerator. The purpose is to dry the skin thoroughly. I did it overnight.
4. Place the pork belly skin side up on a baking tray. There are many ways to roast a piece of meat. The key is to reduce the amount of oil splashes in the oven. Please find other resources on the internet on how to deal with this.
5. Set the oven to 400F and let it come to temperature.
6. Roast the pork belly for 1 hour or until you can stick a bamboo skewer through the meat.
I lied when I said I used pork belly, be honest, I actually did not use the traditional pork belly cut. Instead I used something leaner as you can see from the photo. I don't remember the name of the cut but I will update it when I find it.
In my opinion, this is a very simple dish to make and it sure tasted better than any store-bought roasted pork belly within my vicinity.
My roasted pork belly has a big gaping hole staring at me. Now it makes sense why the author of the website that I used has this line:
By this time, the skin will be softened and you can see some blistering on the skin. Using a bamboo skewer, poke as many holes as you can on the portion of the skin which is still soft.