Mustard With Mutton

Annabel Langbein’s Caramelised Asian Pork Belly

Pork belly would have to be one of my favourite cuts of meat and it’s also one of the easiest to cook – all those layers of meat interspersed with fat means it’s hard to overcook or dry it out. I’ve posted quite a few recipes for pork belly and I didn’t really think I would be in need of any more but this recipe from Annabel Langbein’s newest book Through the Seasons caught my eye and I just had to try it. Pork belly seems to lend itself really well to strong flavours, especially Asian flavours, and this recipe creates a lovely mixture of moist meat, crispy crackling and a delicious Asian sauce, all made in the one pan. It’s great for an Asian theme dinner as all it really needs to accompany it is rice and a salad or green vegetable. I served this with a Thai green papaya salad which created a nice balance against the richness of the meat.

Ingredients – Serves 4-6    Adapted from Annabel Langbein’s Through the Seasons

2 shallots, chopped
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 tablespoons brown sugar
¼ cup fish sauce
¼ cup oyster sauce
2 kg Pork belly, skin on and scored
Juice of 1 lemon
Salt
1 cup coconut milk

Method

Place shallots, garlic, brown sugar, fish sauce and oyster sauce into a baking dish and mix well to combine. Add the pork belly, skin side up and leave to marinade for 4 hours. Preheat oven to 220C. Rub the skin of the pork belly with lemon juice and salt. Add 1 cup of water around the pork (being careful to not get any on the skin) and roast for 45 minutes.

Turn the oven to 150C and add the coconut milk and another cup of water around the pork, again being careful to not get any on the skin. Roast for a further 2 hours. If at the end of the cooking time your crackling is not crisp enough remove the pork to another baking tray and crank the oven to as high as it will go and roast for a further 10-15 minutes, checking often to ensure it doesn’t burn. Carve the pork belly into slices. Skim the fat from the sauce in the pan and serve it over the pork and any extra sauce on the side.