Jump to content


Welcome to the eG Forums!

These forums are a service of the Society for Culinary Arts & Letters, a 501c3 nonprofit organization dedicated to advancement of the culinary arts. Anyone can read the forums, however if you would like to participate in active discussions please join the Society.

Photo

eG Cook-Off #65: Pork Belly

Cookoff

  • Please log in to reply
116 replies to this topic

#61 Anna N

Anna N
  • eGullet Society staff emeritus
  • 6,410 posts
  • Location:Oakville, Ontario, Canada

Posted 22 February 2014 - 09:37 AM

Another (quite small but meaty) pork belly found its way to my house. I dithered back and forth between roast pork belly or bacon. Since my kitchen mojo seems to be MIA, bacon won. It will cure in the fridge for 7 days giving my mojo time to wend its way home.
  • Shelby likes this
Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

"It either works fine or not, but what the heck. This is bread, not birth control." Susan of Wild Yeast blog
Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog
My 2004 eG Blog

#62 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 22 February 2014 - 12:54 PM

Wow Shelby that is a massive pork belly compared to the puny stuff I get. It would be perfect for bacon. Did you just find it at a local market or did you have to ask a butcher to order it for you? If I only lived more close to the land of pork.

 

At my local Chinese grocer they come in boxes (chilled/semi-frozen) of slabs around 1 foot x 2 feet in dimensions, ranging from about 1 1/2 to 3 inches thick, of varying meat-to-fat ratios.  These folks generally cut them up into strips for sale, but you can get an intact slab or part of a slab if you wish by asking them.  Most customers here don't really want intact pieces, they far prefer slices - and as I have exemplified in my posts, that is how most folks use it when cooking pork belly.



#63 Shelby

Shelby
  • society donor
  • 2,555 posts

Posted 22 February 2014 - 04:00 PM

And, here's what we did with the second belly…we meaning my husband lol.

 

Bacon!

 

Brined for a week and then smoked for 4 hours at 160 degrees.

 

Image.jpg

 

Image 1.jpg

 

 


  • jayt90, demiglace, David Ross and 5 others like this

#64 ChrisTaylor

ChrisTaylor
  • host
  • 2,095 posts
  • Location:Melbourne

Posted 22 February 2014 - 04:12 PM

That looks lovely, Shelby.


  • Shelby likes this

Chris Taylor

Host, eG Forums - ctaylor@egstaff.org

 

I've never met an animal I didn't enjoy with salt and pepper.

Melbourne
Harare, Victoria Falls and some places in between


#65 David Ross

David Ross
  • host
  • 3,377 posts
  • Location:Spokane

Posted 22 February 2014 - 04:49 PM

I took the advice and was at the Asian store when they opened at 9am this morning.  The meat case was full of fat, thick, meaty pork belly--at a really good price of $2.99 per pound.  For comparison I went online and found two high-end sources for pork belly, both at the $25.00 per pound mark, (without shipping).

030.JPG

 

This fat boy will be bacon in a few weeks, although I don't know if mine will turn out as delicious looking as what Shelby has displayed. 

033.JPG


  • jayt90, gfweb, Shelby and 1 other like this

#66 rotuts

rotuts
  • participating member
  • 5,696 posts
  • Location:Boston MA

Posted 22 February 2014 - 05:09 PM

re: bacon :  

Shelby

 

Oooooooooooooo !

 

re D.R.:  Ooooooooooooo!  did you stay around for the Scrum ?  its at 9:15 ?


  • David Ross and Shelby like this

#67 Shelby

Shelby
  • society donor
  • 2,555 posts

Posted 22 February 2014 - 05:10 PM

David, I'm so glad you were able to find a good price and a good cut!  

 

 

I haven't googled yet, I'm asking here first.  We didn't eat all of the pork belly I made with the crispy top.  What is the best way to re-heat it?



#68 rotuts

rotuts
  • participating member
  • 5,696 posts
  • Location:Boston MA

Posted 22 February 2014 - 05:15 PM

slice it thin as you can for a sandwich.  soup is good with this.

 

some croutons?


Edited by rotuts, 22 February 2014 - 05:15 PM.

  • Shelby likes this

#69 rotuts

rotuts
  • participating member
  • 5,696 posts
  • Location:Boston MA

Posted 22 February 2014 - 06:19 PM

Tomorrow  at 9:01  Ill be at the Allston MA 'ChinaMart' for a few Bellies.

 

sorry my Sony is so old and large i cant take pics of the Scrum. no cell pics here.

 

might take it anyway.

 

Ill look for the usual pork dumpling in the Cold Counter.  Ill send a pic of those later.


  • Shelby likes this

#70 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 25 February 2014 - 12:12 AM

Medium-hot oven for a short while.


  • Shelby likes this

#71 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 25 February 2014 - 12:26 AM

Pork belly stir-fry.

 

 

Pork belly being sliced up:

DSCN0646a_1k.jpg

(Yes, it is pork belly, not some other cut.  This was taken off the end of a slab of pork belly I got just the other day; this meaty end also had semi-missing skin due to a partial hack through it during processing at the plant, presumably)

 

 

Pork belly sliced marinated w/ Shaohsing wine, ryori-shu, mirin-fuu, "aged soy sauce", ground white pepper.

Plus some other ingredients - sliced bamboo shoots (large head type), ginger, garlic; also chopped Chinese long beans (stir-fried separately).

DSCN0648a_1k.jpg

 

 

Stuff in the pan - peanut oil, ginger, garlic, pork belly; toss around; bamboo shoots, then fresh wood-ear fungus (not shown above); toss around; trimmed scallions (not shown above) at the last; seasoning adjusted.

DSCN0653a_1k.jpg

 

 

Plated, with rice.

DSCN0658a_1k.jpg

 

 

(The long beans were separately stir-fried and eaten alongside.  See here for a pic.)


Edited by huiray, 25 February 2014 - 12:58 AM.

  • jayt90 and Shelby like this

#72 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 25 February 2014 - 12:45 AM

Regarding pork belly prices:

At my local Chinese/Asian/International markets/groceries I would say the price hovers in the mid-2 buck per pound range or so.  At the full-service butcher I go to on occasion (I get my picanha from them also) their pork belly is around $7/lb, usually 50-50 fat-to-lean or thereabouts.  Pork belly is very rare in "normal" Western supermarkets around here.

 

Regarding the "pork belly scrum" mentioned in some posts above - personally, I have never seen such a thing in any of the places I've lived and shopped in. 



#73 gfweb

gfweb
  • participating member
  • 3,795 posts

Posted 25 February 2014 - 07:00 AM

And, here's what we did with the second belly…we meaning my husband lol.

 

Bacon!

 

Brined for a week and then smoked for 4 hours at 160 degrees.

 

attachicon.gifImage.jpg

 

attachicon.gifImage 1.jpg

 

 

Pretty!

 

Was there nitrate in the brine?



#74 Shelby

Shelby
  • society donor
  • 2,555 posts

Posted 25 February 2014 - 08:06 AM

 

And, here's what we did with the second belly…we meaning my husband lol.

 

Bacon!

 

Brined for a week and then smoked for 4 hours at 160 degrees.

 

attachicon.gifImage.jpg

 

attachicon.gifImage 1.jpg

 

 

Pretty!

 

Was there nitrate in the brine?

 

Yes, we use Morton's Tender Quick.



#75 David Ross

David Ross
  • host
  • 3,377 posts
  • Location:Spokane

Posted 25 February 2014 - 04:18 PM

And, here's what we did with the second belly…we meaning my husband lol.

 

Bacon!

 

Brined for a week and then smoked for 4 hours at 160 degrees.

 

attachicon.gifImage.jpg

 

attachicon.gifImage 1.jpg

 

 

Do you prefer to bake the bacon or pan-fry?  I prefer to put the slices on a rack over a cookie sheet and bake in a 400 oven, turning once or twice, until crispy.



#76 Shelby

Shelby
  • society donor
  • 2,555 posts

Posted 25 February 2014 - 05:15 PM

 

And, here's what we did with the second belly…we meaning my husband lol.

 

Bacon!

 

Brined for a week and then smoked for 4 hours at 160 degrees.

 

attachicon.gifImage.jpg

 

attachicon.gifImage 1.jpg

 

 

Do you prefer to bake the bacon or pan-fry?  I prefer to put the slices on a rack over a cookie sheet and bake in a 400 oven, turning once or twice, until crispy.

 

I am the same way--in the oven.  I, frankly, am not good at pan frying bacon and I like my results a whole lot better in the oven.



#77 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 25 February 2014 - 05:34 PM

A version of Nyonya-style Babi Panggang.

 

Closely after recipe P38 of Irene's Peranakan Recipes.

 

 

Pork belly piece:

DSCN0641a_1k.jpg

 

 

Sliced lengthwise, fairly deeply.  Slathered w/ a mix of chopped garlic, salt & pepper, rubbed into the slits also.

DSCN0644a_1k.jpg

 

Rested overnight (cold garage).  Roasted in medium oven for a short while.  Pulled out, skin pricked w/ a sharp pointed paring knife, then broiled under the grill till the skin bubbled/crackled & turned brown.  Left it a bit too long (surfing the Net)...  Back into the oven for a bit.  Pulled again, flipped over, "marinade" of chopped shallots, sugar, dark soy sauce, ground coriander powder, five-spice powder rubbed in.  Flipped back over, returned to oven till meat at thickest part was at about 160ºF.

 

"Marinade":

DSCN0659a_1k.jpg

 

 

After final pull = "done".  (Burnt edges scraped off)

DSCN0664a_1k.jpg

 

 

Chopped up (part of it) and plated;

with pickled scallions & Japanese cucumbers, white rice, Napa cabbage in chicken stock.

DSCN0673b_1k.jpg

 

 

 

 


  • Anna N, jayt90, demiglace and 7 others like this

#78 David Ross

David Ross
  • host
  • 3,377 posts
  • Location:Spokane

Posted 25 February 2014 - 05:47 PM

Now that is a fabulous pork belly dish.



#79 Shelby

Shelby
  • society donor
  • 2,555 posts

Posted 25 February 2014 - 05:56 PM

A version of Nyonya-style Babi Panggang.

 

Closely after recipe P38 of Irene's Peranakan Recipes.

 

 

Pork belly piece:

attachicon.gifDSCN0641a_1k.jpg

 

 

Sliced lengthwise, fairly deeply.  Slathered w/ a mix of chopped garlic, salt & pepper, rubbed into the slits also.

attachicon.gifDSCN0644a_1k.jpg

 

Rested overnight (cold garage).  Roasted in medium oven for a short while.  Pulled out, skin pricked w/ a sharp pointed paring knife, then broiled under the grill till the skin bubbled/crackled & turned brown.  Left it a bit too long (surfing the Net)...  Back into the oven for a bit.  Pulled again, flipped over, "marinade" of chopped shallots, sugar, dark soy sauce, ground coriander powder, five-spice powder rubbed in.  Flipped back over, returned to oven till meat at thickest part was at about 160ºF.

 

"Marinade":

attachicon.gifDSCN0659a_1k.jpg

 

 

After final pull = "done".  (Burnt edges scraped off)

attachicon.gifDSCN0664a_1k.jpg

 

 

Chopped up (part of it) and plated;

with pickled scallions & Japanese cucumbers, white rice, Napa cabbage in chicken stock.

attachicon.gifDSCN0673b_1k.jpg

 

 

 

 

I just drooled.  



#80 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 26 February 2014 - 10:35 AM

Thanks, David Ross & Shelby (& Anna N).

 

A comment about what kind of pork belly is desired - I think most folks here prefer meaty cuts, the meatier the better, I suspect. From the perspective of E/SE Asian cooking, a generous amount of fat is commonly preferred, with as many separate intercalating layers as possible being the most prized.  

 

Here are two image sets - one for "five flower (pork) meat" (五花肉) and the other for "three layer (pork) meat" (三層肉), both of which are terms for pork belly.  If I were to choose from the examples shown in the "five flower meat" set of images, I personally would LOVE to get my hands on this, this, and this - as just three examples.  From the "three layer meat" set, three examples I'd snatch up would be this, this and this.  

 

Naturally, YMMV. 

 

:-) 


  • demiglace and Steve Irby like this

#81 wokkingtall

wokkingtall
  • participating member
  • 16 posts

Posted 04 March 2014 - 04:31 PM

Hi huiray,

 

Your pork belly dish (above) looks fantastic .  I am wondering though...when you have it under the broiler to crisp the skin, what is the smoke factor like...?  Your recipe looks like something I'd want to try, but am afraid of triggering any and all the smoke alarms in my apartment.  ( I don't have a range hood, unfortunately...)



#82 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 04 March 2014 - 05:09 PM

wokkingtall,  the smoke factor isn't bad at all - not none, but fairly minimal.  The aroma is certainly present, though.  I have smoke alarms also and they didn't seem disturbed by this.



#83 Shelby

Shelby
  • society donor
  • 2,555 posts

Posted 05 March 2014 - 09:14 AM

Anna, how is the bacon coming along?  



#84 Anna N

Anna N
  • eGullet Society staff emeritus
  • 6,410 posts
  • Location:Oakville, Ontario, Canada

Posted 05 March 2014 - 01:14 PM

Anna, how is the bacon coming along?


Another big FAIL. To me the cure I used was way too sweet. The belly itself should have been trimmed (by me) to be much neater. I think I did not pay enough attention to detail. Will be on the look out for another belly and will revert to Ruhlman's cure. I have done it before and it was fine bacon.
Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

"It either works fine or not, but what the heck. This is bread, not birth control." Susan of Wild Yeast blog
Our 2012 (Kerry Beal and me) Blog
My 2004 eG Blog

#85 Shelby

Shelby
  • society donor
  • 2,555 posts

Posted 06 March 2014 - 08:23 AM

Another big FAIL. To me the cure I used was way too sweet. The belly itself should have been trimmed (by me) to be much neater. I think I did not pay enough attention to detail. Will be on the look out for another belly and will revert to Ruhlman's cure. I have done it before and it was fine bacon.

Maybe you could use it for the famous bacon jam that everyone loves here?


  • gfweb likes this

#86 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 08 March 2014 - 08:49 AM

Kow Yuk 2014-0307

 

A version of Mui Choy Kow Yuk (梅菜扣肉) (Hakka-style pork belly with preserved mustard greens).

 

 

Pork belly pieces: These are from half of a 3+ pound slab, cut into two.

DSCN0756a_800.jpg

 

Blanched/cooked in simmering water for about 5 minutes.  Prickled the skin all over with a fork.

DSCN0759a_600.jpg   DSCN0762a_600.jpg

 

Pan-fried on all sides, with canola oil.

DSCN0764b_600.jpg   DSCN0768a_600.jpg

 

Soaked in cold water for a while to chill it and to soften the skin a fair bit.

DSCN0771a_600.jpg

 

Cut into slices about 2/3 inch thick each.

DSCN0787a_800.jpg

 

 

In the meanwhile…

 

A pack of the mui choy I used (陳年梅乾菜). (“aged dry mustard greens”)

DSCN0818a_800.jpg

 

This is different from the “traditional” one more often used for this dish – which would be whole plants of mustard, preserved/pickled w/ salt (+ a little sugar) or sugar (+ a little salt), and would be “wetter” and either much saltier or sweeter (depending on the variety) and would require more extensive soaking.

 

These “aged dry” greens were swished briefly in a bowl of room temperature /lukewarm water just to loosen up the mass and to get rid of (most of) any residual grit, then drained in a colander.  Mixed with some of an earlier batch of these greens that had been soaked for much longer in water and which had resulted in almost all the flavor being leached out into the now brown (and tasty) water.  Squeezed lightly, then chopped up further.  Pan-fried/sautéed w/ chopped smashed garlic, finely chopped ginger and finely chopped shallots (a fair bit) in part of the pan residues (which also contained rendered lard) from frying the pork belly pieces, diluted w/ some canola oil.  (The mustard greens went in last, of course)

 

No picture, sorry.  Forgot to take one.

 

 

Also in the meanwhile…

 

A sauce/marinade was made:  Several cubes of white preserved beancurd in sesame oil (麻油白腐乳) were mushed up and gently “fried” in a little peanut oil then quenched w/ a mixture of Shaohsing wine (a fair bit), oyster sauce, yellow rock sugar, light soy sauce [I used Pearl River Superior], dark soy sauce [I used Yuet Heung Yuen], one cinnamon stick, about a dozen whole cloves, two whole star anise, some whole fennel seeds, a couple pieces of dried tangerine peel (陳皮), a few thin slices of ginger, a generous knife-blade-end’s-worth of five spice powder; followed by about two cups or so of warm water.  Simmered (partly covered) for a while to develop flavor and to blend.  The sauce is salty-tangy with a *definite* sweetness to it.

 

 

Pic of: 1) the chopped garlic, shallots and ginger used for frying with the rinsed mustard greens; and 2) of the sauce/marinade in the pan on the stove after everything had just been combined (before simmering to blend):

DSCN0782a_600.jpg   DSCN0780a_600.jpg

 

 

Assembly:

Pork belly slices, skin-side down, into a pyrex bowl; arranged side-by-side with two shorter slices “capping” the arrayed stack.  The fried mustard greens-shallots-ginger-garlic mixture went onto the pork slices, with some of the mixture worked between each slice and also around the pork belly slices.

DSCN0788a_600.jpg   DSCN0791a_600.jpg

 

The sauce/marinade was poured over the assembly, straining through a tea-strainer sieve.

The whole shebang was steamed for 6+ hours, with the water at a very gentle boil; water replenished as needed.

DSCN0794a_600.jpg   DSCN0796a_600.jpg

 

Plating:  a deep dish was placed over the bowl+contents (removed from the steaming pot, of course) and the whole thing quickly turned over (done over the sink, just in case!) while holding the two parts together firmly. (With a heat pad held on the bottom of the pyrex bowl)

 

Ta-da.

DSCN0799a_800.jpg

DSCN0801b_800.jpg

 

 

Eaten with white rice and a Daikon-Chinese mushroom soup. (See the “Dinner” thread for this)


Edited by huiray, 08 March 2014 - 10:31 AM.

  • jayt90, demiglace and Shelby like this

#87 wokkingtall

wokkingtall
  • participating member
  • 16 posts

Posted 10 March 2014 - 09:28 AM

My father (and others of his generation in my family) makes a similar kow yuk dish.  Instead of the preserved vegetable that you have, he (they) use thick-ish slices of taro.  Occasionally, it might be potato.

 

In my family's case, we would only get this for occasions such as Christmas.  My father would tell us how much work was required.  In his case, it usually took him 2-3 days.  I can see why now.

 

For me, it was a slightly acquired taste when I was younger.  I now enjoy it immensely... more so, perhaps because there will be fewer Christmases left to have it...  



#88 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 10 March 2014 - 03:45 PM

My father (and others of his generation in my family) makes a similar kow yuk dish.  Instead of the preserved vegetable that you have, he (they) use thick-ish slices of taro.  Occasionally, it might be potato.

 

In my family's case, we would only get this for occasions such as Christmas.  My father would tell us how much work was required.  In his case, it usually took him 2-3 days.  I can see why now.

 

For me, it was a slightly acquired taste when I was younger.  I now enjoy it immensely... more so, perhaps because there will be fewer Christmases left to have it...  

 

Heh - yes, the dish does take some effort. There are also, of course, many variations on how exactly to do it and what exactly goes into it.

 

Kow Yuk indeed has two forms - the one with taro yam slices (Wu Tau; 芋頭), which your father and his contemporaries prepare; and the one with preserved mustard greens which I did here. The taro yam version naturally also has variations on its preparation. :-)  I gave some links to both forms in a previous post on another thread here on eG.  I'm glad you enjoy this dish now when you have the opportunity to do so.


  • wokkingtall likes this

#89 huiray

huiray
  • society donor
  • 2,091 posts
  • Location:Indiana, USA

Posted 18 March 2014 - 08:47 PM

Fried rice with pork belly & stuff.

 

Thinly sliced pork belly, skin removed, frying w/ garlic in pan:

DSCN0910a_800.jpg

 

 

Sliced scallions, large-type green onion/negi, trimmed & cut-up Chinese garlic chive flowers and stalks.

DSCN0911a_800.jpg

 

 

The vegetables went into the pan, several-days-old Basmati rice, seasoned to taste.  Topped w/ freshly deep-fried sliced shallots.

DSCN0915a_800.jpg

 


  • scamhi, scubadoo97, demiglace and 3 others like this

#90 Paul Bacino

Paul Bacino
  • participating member
  • 1,274 posts
  • Location:Bennington Nebraska USA

Posted 20 March 2014 - 06:09 AM

Huiray-- really love looking at your work!!


Its good to have Morels





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Cookoff