I find most animal skins to be rather slimy and too fatty for consumption and so am not a fan, however, I break all the rules for this delectable dish. With its thick, crispy skin and juicy, savory meat roasted to perfection, this dish is truly unique tasting. The recipe is simple with an easy-to-make and flavorful marinade. You can use any marinade you like but to get that distinct Asian roast pork flavor, be sure to use a little 5-spice powder and some soy sauce. To achieve the deliciously crispy and bubbly pork skin, there are numerous techniques with some yielding better results than others. So in this recipe, I’ve eliminated all of the guesswork. This is a no-fuss, no-fail recipe! The only work you have to do is to watch the timer and adjust the oven temperature as needed. It’s hardly work at all 🙂 Enjoy!!
Notes on the Recipe, Tips and Tricks
When buying pork belly, try to find a piece that has the same thickness all around. Also, examine the skin and make sure it doesn’t have any abrasions, markings or imbedded hairs. If frozen pork belly is all you can find, no worries, just make sure the pork is completely thawed before prepping.
The red food coloring is optional. It gives the skin a nice rich color as does the roast pork seasoning mix used in the marinade.
The marinade is enough for up to 3 lbs of pork belly. It’s ok if you don’t use all of the marinade so don’t drench the meat.
Avoid getting the marinade on the pork skin. It will prevent the skin from getting crispy.
The longer the meat is refrigerated, the drier the skin will be and the crispier the results after roasting. For even better results, let the pork rest in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
Level the meat using folded pieces of foil placed underneath the meat. This helps the skin to brown and crisp evenly and you don’t have to stress if the pork belly isn’t perfectly even.
Position the roasting pan in the oven so the meat is about 6-8 inches away from the top heating element.
When the meat is fully cooked the internal temperature is approximately 160 degrees Fahrenheit.
My oven has a Broil High and a Broil Low option. For this recipe, I use the Broil High setting. If your Broil High is particularly hot, use the Low setting. Be careful with the second round of broiling. The skin has a tendency to burn during this stage if left unattended. If certain sections of the skin are browning up faster than others and you fear they will get burnt, tear off small sections of foil and cover up these areas. It’s perfectly normal to have some charred spots. If you don’t like these extra crispy areas, you can scrape them with a knife like you would with over-toasted bread.
Cut up only the portion you plan to eat right away. Wrap up any uneaten amounts and store in the refrigerate for up to 1 week. To reheat, warm the pork in the toaster oven at 325 degrees for 10 minutes. You’ll notice the skin will continue to crisp up when reheating. If you love super crispy skin, you’ll really enjoy these leftovers as the pork reheats really nicely.
You can also freeze any uneaten amounts for up to 3 months.
1 tsp white distilled vinegar
2 drops red food coloring
2 1/2 lb pork belly
2 tsp salt
1 tsp vinegar
In a small bowl, combine 1 tsp of vinegar with 2 drops of red food coloring and set aside for now.
In a measuring cup, add 5-spice powder, roast pork seasoning, oyster sauce, Hoisin sauce, soy sauce and Vodka 5-Spice Marinade and stir together.
Sprinkle each side of the pork belly with 1 tsp salt and then rub into the meat. Rinse the pork with cool water washing off the salt. Pat the meat dry with paper towels. Place the pork skin side down on more paper towels.
Make vertical cuts in the meat about 1/2-inch deep and 1-inch apart being careful not to cut to the skin. Trim if any loose or excess fat.
Use a brush to coat the meat with the marinade making sure to work the marinade into the cuts made earlier. Apply the marinade to the meat only and avoid getting the marinade on the pork skin.
Place the pork with the skin side up into a large baking dish or plate. Brush more marinade onto the sides of the pork belly, again, being careful not to get any on the skin. Sprinkle salt and gently rub into the skin. Brush the skin with the vinegar and red food coloring solution prepared earlier.
Place the uncovered baking dish into the refrigerator and allow to marinate for at least 8 hours.
Remove from the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature for at least 30 minutes before roasting.
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Pour 1 cup water into the bottom of a roasting pan. Place the pork belly skin side up onto the roasting pan.
If the pork belly has an uneven thickness, place folded pieces of foil underneath the meat to level it.
Brush the skin with a thin layer of vinegar.
Place the roasting pan into the oven and roast for 30 minutes.
Brush the skin with another thin layer of vinegar. Set the oven to Broil and roast for 10 minutes. (At this point, you’ll see bubbles forming on the skin.)
Adjust the temperature to 325 degrees Fahrenheit again and roast for 15 minutes.
Turn the oven to Broil again and roast for 5-10 minutes until the skin has lots of crispy bubbles and is golden brown.
Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Cut the pork belly into strips following the cuts made earlier. Chop the meat into bite-sized pieces.
Yields: 4-6 servings
Tools I Love and Use in My Kitchen
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