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Crispy Pork Belly

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    Crispy Pork Belly

    Cooked up some pork belly using an APL recipe called "Crisp and Unctious Pork Belly". It sits in a marinade overnight then the meat sits in a foil pan for over 7 hours, including low and slow at 275° for about 5 1/2 hours and then resting for 2 hours. (Does sitting in a foil pan for so long count as BBQ?) After it turns all gelatinous and jiggly, it goes over direct fire to crisp up the skin.

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    I've done this a couple times before using a cheap, inadequate basket so this time around I decided to make something more substantial. I bought a couple 18.5" weber grates and secured them together using a combination of threaded rods, washers, hex nuts, and wing nuts. The hex nuts are used to secured one end and the wing nuts on the other end so I can adjust the height of the basket according to the meat's thickness. This way I could keep the loose meat secure when flipping, moving, etc.
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    I think the meat was a little overcooked. I used an internal probe and let it get to 208° internal because I was following the recipe time. I'm not sure why the recipe calls for such a long cook so next time I'm going to try stopping around 160°. Does that sound alright? And I still need to work on the crisping, but at least I'm making improvements compared to previous cooks. I also used a torch to try and even the browning out on the skin. Me like torch!
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    Here's the little one saying "take my picture!"
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    Served with homemade applesauce, arugula salad, corn hush puppies (courtesy of my wife), and a dab of English mustard.
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    Last edited by eugenek; January 4, 2015, 12:27 PM.

    Eugene, I like that Mod man! Looks very well put together. Necessity is the mother of invention. Looks like it worked well.

    I don't know why they even list cook times, it just screws people up. Meathead says to always cook by temp not time. The times that recipes give you is just a ballpark figure of how long it should take. Different animals/conditions etc. make for differing cook times. So as a rule of thumb for me, I always cook by temp not time.

    If you stop at 160 F on your next cook, thats fine, but make sure that is the level of doness your shooting for. I would think you would want to go for closer to 200 F to get all the connective tissues broken down and make that belly like butta.

    I don't know if browning with the torch is the best idea. I tried it once a while back and the food tasted like fuel. Not appetizing. I was using a creme boulle torch when I did mine. So maybe it would be different than what your using but, I would advise against using the torch to sear the meat. Perhaps the reverse sear would be in order to get a nice sear on the outside. I don't know if thats possible with a Belly but it may be something to look into. Or you could put it in a large roasting pan and put it under the broiler in your oven as well. There are a few other options for you to try. I just don't want to see someone make the same mistake I did with a torch and ruin a good Belly in the process!
    Nice write up and pics. Looking forward to the results from your next belly.



      Awesome post ek!


        John, thanks for the good advice. I didn't get any noticeable fuel taste from the torch but I used it pretty sparingly, too, mostly on the edges that curved up. Very happy with how the basket turned out. I can adjust all four corners to better match the meat and it accommodates larger cuts.


          Nice. Love some fried corn nuggets.


            Yumm... My porchetta goes to an internal of 160. The safe temperature for pork was lowered to 145 from 160 but I still go to 160 for everything except tenderloin.

            Nice looking finish. If you like blowtorch work, here is how I finish up ribs....




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