Crispy Pork Belly with Fennel Salt
I am addicted to pork belly, especially when it has a super crispy crackle. There are many theories on how to create the crispest skin; we could explore them all day! But I have always found this way works perfectly.
Preheat oven to a hot 230°C.
Using a small motor and pestle or a mini food processor or mill, crush the fennel seeds, add the salt and pound together with the pestle.
Dry the pork skin thoroughly and rub with fennel salt, make sure get some in between the skin where you scored it.
Place preheated oven and cook until the skin has crackled about 35 to 40 mins. If some of the skin hasn't crackled yet leave it for another 10 mins or so.
Reduce heat to 160°C and cook for another 45 - 60 mins.
Remove from oven and allow to rest for about 15 mins. Slice and serve!
The trick is to dry the skin out. I try to buy my pork the day before I plan to cook it. Dry it thoroughly with paper towel and place it in the fridge uncovered overnight. The next day I score the skin with a super sharp knife no more than a centimetre apart, even closer together if you can.
Pat the pork down again with paper towel and rub the salt in just before you put it in the oven. The salt draws out moisture and moisture is a crispy skins worst enemy so don’t salt it unless you are ready to roast it.
NOTE: I haven’t given a size for the pork, choose a size that you think will your clan, keep in mind it will shrink once cooked. Add more salt if needed.
And if you don’t or don’t like fennel seeds leave them out and just that belly skin down with salt.
My legendary butcher gave me those extra little belly pieces so I thought I’d just throw them in.