Pork belly with apple slaw and chilli caramel

Tuesday, May 22, 2012
Pork belly with apple slaw and chilli caramel

Flavours of Melbourne is a locally sourced cookbook-come-city guide for all things food related in Victoria's capital. Bursting with almost 400 pages of photography from the streets, laneways and back alleys of Melbourne, the book showcases hundreds of the city's famous bars, cafes and restaurants. Flavours of Melbourne also compiles a collection of signature recipes by some of the city's iconic chefs including Guy Grossi and Pierrick Boyer. For more information or to purchase a copy of Flavours of Melbourne click here.

Chef, Gavin Van Staden, Red Spice Road

Entree, Serves 4

Ingredients
800g piece pork belly
1 lt master stock
200ml chilli caramel
1 large red chilli, seeded and sliced
1 large pinch spring onions, chopped
2 cups tapioca starch
100ml light soy sauce
2 tablespoons five spice powder
1 lt vegetable oil
black vinegar

For the slaw
6 mint leaves, torn
1 pinch coriander leaves
6 Vietnamese mint leaves
6 shiso leaves, torn
50g cabbage, shredded finely
20g red cabbage, shredded finely
1/2 green apple, sliced finely
nuoc cham, enough to dress the slaw

Nuoc cham
2 garlic cloves
50ml fish sauce
50ml lime juice
50ml rice vinegar
2 red bullet chillies, sliced
70g castor sugar

Chilli caramel
500g castor sugar
500ml water
3 small red chillies, chopped
12 star anise
100ml fish sauce
100 ml light soy sauce

Method:
Pre-heat oven to medium heat. Place the belly in a baking tray, add the master stock, cover with foil and place in oven. Cook for around 4 hours, checking occasionally to make sure the master stock has not reduced too much. If it has, top up with a little more master stock or water. Allow to cool slightly, remove the belly and place it on a tray and refrigerate. When chilled completely, cut the belly into 8 pieces. Put the pieces into a bowl, add the soy sauce, coat the belly then pour off the soy. Add the tapioca starch and the five spice, making sure you coat the pork pieces evenly. Dust off any excess starch. In a wok heat the oil to roughly 170 degrees C. Add the coated pork pieces to the wok being careful that the oil doesn’t boil over. You may need to do this in 2 batches. Fry the pork for around 7 mins, then remove from the oil.
In a fry pan or wok heat up the chilli caramel, add the spring onions, chilli and the fried pork and cook for 30 seconds. Place the pork in a bowl, pour over the caramel and top with the apple slaw. Serve with a side dish of black vinegar.

To make the Nuoc cham
Mix all the ingredients in a bowl, stir until the sugar dissolves. Leave to stand for at least 30mins before using.

To make the Chilli caramel
In a saucepan add the sugar and the water and bring to the boil. Continue to boil until it starts to caramelise. Add the chillies, star anise, fish sauce and the soy, being careful that the caramel does not splash you. Turn down the heat and simmer for 5 minutes then turn off completely and leave for 5minutes. Strain and set aside for later use.

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