Preparation time: 15 Minutes
Cooking time: 3 Hours
- 1 x 500g pork belly piece
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1–2 teaspoons Chinese five-spiceMethod
- Place the pork belly piece skin-side down in a large saucepan and cover with boiling water. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes before removing the meat from the pan (Some scum may form on the top of the water; it is just some of the
impurities and excess fat the pork holds within its skin and will be discarded once the pork is blanched).
- Remove the meat from the pan and run under cold water to cool. Once cool, pat the skin dry with kitchen paper and score gently using the tip of a sharp knife in diagonal ‘criss-cross’ cuts along the top of the skin, trying to only open up the fat and not cut into the meat itself.
- Dry the skin with kitchen paper once more and rub the salt into it. Rub the five-spice onto the sides and bottom of the meat only, not the skin.
- Preheat the oven to 130°C/265°F/Gas ¾. Place the pork on a wire rack above a roasting tin skin-side up and roast in the oven for 1½ hours. Now turn the oven up to 230°C/450°F/Gas 8 and roast for a further 30–45 minutes, or until the skin is golden brown and crispy all the way through. To judge whether the pork skin is crispy enough, give it a flick with your finger; if the sound is hollow like that from the bottom of a well-baked loaf of bread, then the pork is definitely crispy enough.
- Remove the pork from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes. Turn the pork skin-side down on a chopping board and slice through the skin with a sharp large knife or cleaver, pressing down on the top of the blade to slice through the crackling. Serve.
TIP: If you do not have a fan function on your oven, leave the pork out to dry in a cool, dry area of your kitchen for 1 hour before placing in the oven.
Recipe taken from Chinese Unchopped by Jeremy Pang