Spiced Whole Pork Belly with Crispy Courgette & Orange Salad

4:00 am on 10 April 2009

The trick here is to poach the pork belly first so you cut down the time on the barbecue, which can dry it out. The belly can take a lot of spice, but the sweet orange salad complements this beautifully.

Buy the pork from your butcher - who will cut it to size and remove the bones.

Serves 6

Ingredients

1kg pork belly, skin on
1 tbsp runny honey
2 tbsp hoisin sauce

Marinade
3 star anise
3 cloves
½ tsp chilli flakes
1 cup white sugar
2 tbsp white wine vinegar
12 coriander seeds

Salad
3 courgettes (zucchini)
salt and pepper
olive oil for cooking
2 oranges
50ml extra virgin olive oil for salad dressing
3 tbsp toasted pine nuts
3 tbsp toasted peanuts
12 mint leaves

Method

Preheat the oven to 160ºC. Place the pork belly skin-side up in a deep braising dish and cover with cold water. Add the marinade ingredients to the dish and cover with tinfoil. Cook for 1½ hours.

Remove the meat and allow to cool in the fridge. Transfer the cooking liquid to a saucepan and reduce until it forms a syrupy glaze. Remove from the heat and mix in the honey and hoisin sauce. Set aside until required.

Using your fingers, peel the skin off the pork belly. Place the skin on an oven tray and bake at 180ºC for 10-15 minutes or until crispy.

Slice the courgettes lengthways into thin strips. Toss in a bowl along with salt, pepper and olive oil and cook on the barbecue grill until golden and crispy. Set aside on kitchen paper to drain.

Place pork on the barbecue hotplate. Cook until tender, about 20-30 minutes, brushing with the hoisin glaze as it cooks.

Peel and segment the oranges for the salad. Squeeze the segments and mix the resulting juice with the extra virgin olive oil to make a dressing. Mix together the orange segments with the crispy courgettes, nuts and mint leaves and toss with the dressing.

To Serve

Place the courgette and orange salad in the middle of a platter. Slice the belly into thick steaks and arrange around the salad. Using a pair of scissors, cut the pork crackling and arrange on top of the pork.

From Jesse Mulligan, 1–4pm

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