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May 25, 2007 09:25 AM

Pork belly

I bought a 4 lb pork belly a few weeks ago and am trying to figure out just what to do with this thing. The one thing I want to try is making home-made bacon. Most recipes require some sort of smoker (a cold smoker? I don't even know what it is), which I don't have. I do have a Weber grill (charcoal) though... Has anyone made home-made bacon on a plain grill?

As to making a non-bacon dish out of the belly, I'd prefer to do something that makes it crispy, but most preparations I see involve braising it. Does anyone have any experience with pork belly that they can share regarding different types of preparations and what the pros/cons of them are?

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  1. Use the Cantonese method for roasting a pig. Some restaurants now use only the belly part, as that's considered the prime cut. You need to poke holes in the skin and abrade it. Then add a dry rub and make sure that the surface is very dry. The skin will get bubbly and very crispy when you roast it.

    1. You can make bacon without smoking it. Michael Ruhlman' s recipe in Charcuterie is quite good. Easy Easy Easy. Simply cure the pork and if you can not smoke it, slow roast it. Chill, wrap and store. Slice it and cook it when you need it.

      1. Pork Bellies seem to have appeared in a lot of the to gourmet restuarants, and, of course, on the food network. Here's a recipe that caught my eye, but, it probably won't leave you with any bacon.

          1. I really like the Frugal Gourmet's recipe in his Three Ancient Cuisines. Super simple and delicious.