I love to make this dish when I have friends coming over for a relaxed meal.
1 kg (2.2 lb) pork belly, deboned
Olive or coconut oil
2 tsp five-spice powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
Boil some water in a pot large enough to hold the pork belly with 2-3 teaspoons salt, and place the pork in the boiling water, making sure it is totally submerged.
Boil uncovered for 30 minutes. Remove and drain on a wire rack. Pat dry with a paper towel and leave for about 20 minutes to dry out.
Score the skin vertically with a knife, about 1/2 cm apart. Make sure it cuts through to the fat, as this will allow the fat to render.
Rub about 1/2 tbsp of salt over the meat and skin. Combine marinade in a bowl and rub all over the meat (but not the skin). Place in the fridge uncovered for 4 hours or overnight.
Preheat oven to 180 C (350 F). Rub a little salt and oil over the skin. Place on a wire rack skin side up, and pour about 1-2 cups of water into the roasting pan so that it steams the meat in the oven.
Place the pan in the middle rack in the oven and roast for 1 hour. Increase temperature to 220C ( 425 F) and roast for another half hour or until skin starts to brown and sizzle. Turn on the grill/broiler on high to crisp up the skin, which should begin to bubble, crackle and pop! When it starts to char, and the skin is evenly crisped all over, remove from oven and let it rest for about 10-15 minutes before slicing/chopping into pieces. Best to use a chopper to do this, if not, a regular chef’s knife is fine too.
Serve with seasonal fresh vegetables of your choice and creamy mashed sweet potato. I also love to serve this with a light red wine jus.
For the Red Wine Jus
1 cup dry red wine, whatever your drinking
1 cup chicken or beef stock (broth)
2 cloves of garlic,
1 sprig of fresh rosemary
Grab a small saucepan and put it over a low heat. Smash 2 garlic cloves with the flat side of your knife and drop them into the saucepan.
Pour in the wine and submerge the rosemary sprig. If your rosemary too long to fit in the saucepan cut it in half with some scissors.
Let the red wine simmer with the herbs over a medium heat until the volume has reduced by half. This should take about 20 minutes depending on how hot your stove is. Give it a swirl around the pan every 10 minutes to combine.
Once reduced, pour in the stock along with a some fresh ground black pepper.
Again, let the sauce reduce by half over a medium heat (let it simmer, but not boil) for about another 20 mins.
You can make this ahead of time and reheat. Leaving it on a lower heat for longer will give you a much more concentrated sauce.
Strain through a fine sieve, or just spoon out of the saucepan over the meat