Mr J is on a roll in the kitchen. And I’m not complaining one bit.
First, there was Nigella Lawson. Now, Marco Pierre White.
He seems to have found his mojo in the kitchen, and I’m the lucky guinea pig who gets to taste his creations. Mr J seems to leaned towards recipe-book dishes that he copies down to the T, whereas I’m more of see-how-it-goes-and-what-I-feel-like kind of cooking. There’s only one rule in the kitchen though, we don’t cook together. When we do, it’s a recipe for disaster. My happy go lucky cooking style does not go well with his meticulous, measured ways, so we both respect each other and get the heck out of each other’s ways when cooking. A good domestic arrangement, eh?
I introduced Marco Pierre White to Mr J through his Honey Glazed Pork Belly with Crispy Skin. I first saw this episode on the Lifestyle Food channel about a year ago, and I drooled eagerly infront of the television. When I showed the video to Mr J, he too drooled eagerly.
We both decided to serve this to Mr J’s parents and relatives one night after inviting them to our new place for the first time. The relos and parents were quite impressed – both with the place and the food and Mr J’s newfound cooking skills. This only goes to show that when impressing people, crispy skin goes a long, long way.
Marco Pierre White’s Honey Glazed Pork Belly with Crispy Skin
Recipe adapted from Lifestyle Food
Makes approximately 4 servings
1 kg pork belly (one whole pork belly equivalent to 1 kg or thereabouts)
1 tbsp salt
4 whole onions, sliced in half with skin on
Bay leaves (about 4)
6 star anise
1 tsp coriander powder
1. Pre-heat the oven to 160 deg C.
2. Rub the pork with the oil and salt. Ensure the skin gets a more generous salting in preparation for the crispy skin.
3. In a large roasting tray, pour the water until 3/4 full. Place a wire rack on top of the water, and the pork on the wire rack ensuring that the base of the wire rack (and the pork) is not touching the water level. Roast pork for about 2 hours.
4. In a saucepan, mix the honey, coriander and star anise. Reduce the sauce until it’s smooth and thick.
5. In a smaller baking tray, mix the onions and bay leaves together. Roast in the oven with the pork for a further 20 minutes.
6. To assemble: remove pork from the oven and rest for 10 minutes. When cooled, brush the honey glaze over the crispy skin. Slice into big chunks and arrange in a big platter with the onions. Pour the rest of the honey sauce and serve.
*Note: I found the skin did not quite crisp just by roasting it alone. After cooking and roasting it for 2 hours, I placed the pork, skin up, under the hot grill for a few minutes until the skin bubbled and crisped up.