Crisp Pork Belly with Caramel Vinegar

  • 1.5kg pork belly
  • 2 tbsp sea salt
  • olive oil
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • Caramel vinegar
  • 1/2 cup (115 g) brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup (80 ml) red wine vinegar
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1 cup (250 ml) chicken stock
  • juice of 1 orange
  • 4 wide strips of orange peel
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
Pork Belly
  1. Score the skin of the pork belly in a criss-cross pattern with a sharp knife (a stanley knife works well). Rub the sea salt into the pork skin and set aside for 30 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 220C. Wipe the salt off the pork skin with kitchen paper and dry well. Drizzle a large roasting tin with olive oil. Put the pork belly in the tin skin-side down, drizzle with a little more oil and season with salt and pepper.
  3. Roast for 30 minutes. Reduce temperature to 190C and roast for another 1 1/2 hours. Carefully turn the pork over and roast for another 20 minutes, or until the skin is crisp.
  4. Remove the pork from the oven, cover loosely with foil and set aside to rest for at least 15 minutes. Slice the pork and drizzle with the caramel vinegar (recipe opposite). Serve with steamed rice, a steamed Asian green vegetable and some freshly chopped red chilli.
Caramel vinegar
  1. Put the sugar, vinegar, star anise and cinnamon in a small saucepan and cook, stirring, over medium heat until the sugar has dissolved. 
  2. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes, or until syrupy.
  3. Stir in the chicken stock and simmer for another 5 minutes, or until slightly reduced. 
  4. Add the orange juice and peel, reduce the heat to low and simmer gently until thick and syrupy. Season to taste.