Slow Cooked Honey and Soy Pork Belly

Pork belly is an amazing flavourful cut of meat that lends itself to long, slow cooking – the transformation that takes place is one that time after time never fails to delight. In its raw state the pork looks quite fatty and uninspiring compared to say a well-aged and hung piece of Scotch beef, however after some time in the braise and with some great Chinese inspired ingredients you are rewarded with a melt in the mouth piece of pork that to me is always greater than the sum of its parts.

I’m serving it this week with a very simple and fresh tasting stir-fry of crispy vegetables and egg noodles. This on its own makes an easy and tasty mid-week dinner that I often make for our kids – it’s a good way to increase their vegetable intake without too much fuss and slurping noodles is always a winner.

There is also a great combination of textures at play here as the quick cooked and crunchy stir-fried veg. is the perfect foil for the fork tender pork. Serve with some prawn crackers and a cold glass of Tsingtao Chinese beer and you have an easy meal that is sure to make everyone happy.

The Method

serves 4

800g specially selected Scottish pork belly, cut into 2-3 cm thick pieces
2tbsp oil
Thumb size piece of ginger, cut into thin ‘matchsticks’
2tbsp honey
3tbsp shaoxing wine
1tbsp light soy sauce
1tbsp dark soy sauce
500-600ml water

1. Blanch the pork for 5 mins in boiling water to get rid of impurities, remove the pork, set aside and discard water.
2. Over low heat, add oil and honey to pan, add the pork. Raise the heat to medium and cook until the pork is lightly browned.
3. Reduce to low and add Shaoxing cooking wine, light soy sauce, dark soy sauce, ginger and water, just enough to cover.
4. Cover and simmer for about 1 hour until pork is tender. Stir now and again to prevent burning and add more water if it gets too dry.
5. When tender turn up the heat and stir continuously until the sauce has reduced to a glaze.
6. Serve over stir fried noodles or steamed rice with prawn crackers.