Crisp Pork Belly with Redbelly Blood Orange Pickle
Preparation: 20 minutes plus optional 2 hours – overnight refrigeration
Cooking: 1 hour 20 mins
1k boneless pork belly, ideally of even thickness
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon five-spice
Juice of 1 Redbelly blood orange
60 ml (1/4 cup) soy sauce
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
55 g (1/4 cup) brown sugar
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
4 cm piece ginger, grated
Stir-fried greens or green salad, to serve (optional)
Redbelly Blood Orange Pickle
3 Redbelly blood oranges, peeled, sliced into rounds
½ cup (125ml) Redbelly blood orange juice
½ – 1 tablespoon caster sugar (optional depending on sweetness of Redbelly)
1 large red chili, finely sliced
1 small cucumber, seeded and cut into long matchsticks
1 large carrot, peeled and cut into long ribbons
1 bunch coriander, leaves picked, reserve some sprigs for serving
- Using a very sharp knife, score the pork belly rind by making diagonal cuts 1 cm apart across the whole surface. Place in a colander or on a rack in the sink and pour over a kettle full of boiling water to help the rind separate. If necessary, score more lines. Dry well with paper towel and place, uncovered, in the refrigerator for 2 hours or even overnight. Remove from the refrigerator 30 minutes prior to cooking.
- Preheat the oven to 220°C. Wipe the pork well with paper towel to remove any excess moisture, rub with salt and place, rind side up, in a baking dish (see note) not much bigger than the pork and roast for 25-30 minutes.
- For the sauce. Combine all ingredients in a jug.
- Remove the pork from the oven and reduce the heat to 180°C. Lift the pork from the baking dish, pour out any fat, then pour the sauce into the baking dish and replace the pork on top, ensuring no sauce gets on the rind. Return to the oven and roast for an additional 50 – 60 minutes or until the rind is crisp and the meat juices run clear. If the juices are clear and the rind is not crisp enough, grill for 5 minutes or until the rind blisters. Remove to a wire rack to rest.
- Meanwhile prepare the Redbelly pickle by combining the Redbelly juice with the caster sugar (if using) and chilli in a small saucepan over low heat. Stir until the sugar dissolves, increase the heat, bring to the boil and simmer for 2 minutes. Pour over the Redbelly blood oranges, cucumber and carrot and set aside. Stir through coriander leaves just before serving.
- To serve. Cut the pork into thin slices, drizzle the flesh with some sauce and serve with the Redbelly blood orange pickle topped with the coriander sprigs. Serve with stir-fried greens or salad if desired.
Lyndey’s Note: Small disposable aluminium trays are great for this. Use double and fold the inside one inwards to keep the sauce up around the pork flesh. Saves on washing up! Use a vegetable peeler to slice the vegetables for the pickle. The Redbelly juice replaces vinegar in the pickle so it needs to be tart, perfect at the beginning of its season.