Roast pork was something I always looked forward to having at home on Sundays. My brother and I would fight over the crackling!
There’s plenty of crackling with this dish, but it also has a French touch with its tart berry marinade.
Slow roasted belly pork with sloe gin
Preparation time – 30 minutes
Marinating time – 4 hours or overnight
Cooking time – 3½ to 4 hours
1kg (2lb) piece boneless pork belly, skin scored and patted dry
1tbsp sea salt flakes
4 red onions
1 head of iceberg lettuce
1 unwaxed lemon
200g (7oz) thick Greek yoghurt, or 1 cup
A pinch each of sugar and sea salt
For the marinade
150ml (5fl oz) sloe gin, or 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp
80g (3oz) runny honey, or 6 tbsp
2tsp white pepper
1tbsp red wine vinegar
200g (7oz) red currants or mixed berries (frozen are fine), plus a handful to garnish
Mix the marinade ingredients in a shallow glass or ceramic dish. Place the pork in the dish, skin-side up, making sure that the marinade doesn’t touch the skin. Chill, uncovered, for 4 hours or overnight. When the time is up, preheat the oven to 425°F/240°C fan/gas 8.
Pat the skin of the pork dry again with paper towel. Place on a plate, setting the marinade to one side, and use a hairdryer for 2-3 minutes to remove all the excess moisture from the skin. Rub the skin with salt flakes, getting into the scoring.
Peel and quarter the red onions and place at the bottom of a roasting pan/tin, then pour over the marinade and lay the pork belly on top, skin-side up. Roast for 30 minutes, then turn the heat down to 300°F/170°C fan/gas 3 and roast for 2½-3 hours, or until very tender.
Remove the pork from the oven. Take the onions out and set aside. Crank up the heat again to 425°F/240°C fan/gas 8 and place the pork back in the oven for about 10 minutes, or until the skin is crispy. Remove from the oven and when cool enough to handle, separate the skin from the flesh.
Slice the pork into slivers and chop the skin into crouton-sized pieces. Cut the lettuce into thick slices, then wash and dry (keeping them whole).
Finely zest the lemon and mix into the yoghurt with the sugar and salt. Add a squeeze of lemon juice. To serve, place a lettuce slice on each plate and top with the pork, onions, skin and berries. Drizzle with the yoghurt.
This recipe is from my new book, Rachel Khoo’s Kitchen Notebook, you can order your copy here.