How to make it

  • 1. Make sure Pork Belly is clean and all the truly obnoxious parts are trimmed off. The fat is not considered obnoxious. See Photo
  • 2. Lay the slab fat-side up on a cutting board and dry it off with a paper towel. With a really sharp knife, score the belly. Cut some diagonal lines across the fat of the belly going one way, then repeat going the other way, so that you've got a nice festive diamond pattern in the fat. Make the cuts shallow to avoid cutting into the meat.
  • 3. Mix together all of the rub ingredients but the olive oil. Stir these up until they’re well mixed.
  • 4. Rub your pork belly down with a nice hearty drizzle of olive oil, and then rub the dry ingredients in well. Don’t be lazy or shy.
  • 5. Drop your pork belly into a freezer bag and put it in the fridge for an hour or two. See Photo
  • 6. Heat your oven to 500° F (260° C). Remove the Belly from the bag and lay it fat-side up on the rack of your roasting pan and place the roasting pan on the middle rack in the oven. See Photo
  • 7. Spend the next 10 to 15 minutes checking it regularly; at some point the fat will start to bubble and turn light brown. When that happens, turn the oven temperature down to 325° F. (165° C) and leave it alone for 90 minutes.
  • 8. After 90 minutes, open a, room temp, beer and pour it into the bottom of the roasting pan. Walk away for 30 minutes, then pour in a second, room temp, beer and walk away for another 30 minutes. When the hour is up, remove it from the oven and let it cool for 15-20 minutes.
  • 9. The stuff on the bottom of the pan will be fatty syrup by this time, and the Pork Belly aficionados say it will be a good thing to pour over the meat when it's all sliced or shredded. Well, maybe. As for cooking it, though, you're finished.
  • We let it cool a while and then shredded it. As I said, it had heaps of flavor and most of the fat was in the baking pan. Most of the shredded meat went to sandwiches.
  • The liquid in the bottom of the baking pan was mostly fat but there was juice. I poured both into a covered bowl, let it cool and put it in the fridge. I used the fat that came to the top in dog food. The juice under the fat had great flavor and I used that, with some water added, to season several dishes that called for stock.

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