The Momofuku cookbook contains a number of ambitious recipes, but I began with what is just may be the simplest in this roast pork belly that makes appearances a few times in the book. I had only made braised pork belly dishes prior to making this one, but I really like how the meat of the pork belly stays firm by roasting it. The salt and sugar dry-brine lends a salty-sweet flavor that essentially turns the belly into a very meaty bacon. I served the pork belly wrapped in lettuce with a pickled mustard seed dipping sauce, but it would be just as good served as a steamed bun filling, draped over steamed white rice, or thrown into a pot of ramen.
Momofuku Roast Pork Belly
Adapted from Momofuku
- One 3 lb. slab skinless pork belly
- 1/3 cup kosher salt
- 1/3 cup sugar
- In a large bowl, mix together the salt and sugar. Rub this mixture all over the pork belly, discarding any excess. Place the pork belly in a roasting pan that is large enough for the pork to fit snugly. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
- Heat the oven to 450F.
- Remove the pork belly from the refrigerator. Discard any liquid that has accumulated in the roasting pan.
- Roast the pork belly at 450F for one hour. Halfway through cooking, baste the pork belly with the rendered fat.
- Reduce the oven to 250F and continue to cook for another 30 minutes. Remove the pork belly from the oven and let it cool to room temperature. Wrap the pork in plastic wrap and chill it in the refrigerator (this step will make it easier to cut in the pork belly into uniform pieces).
- Once the pork belly is chilled, remove it from the refrigerator. Using a sharp knife, cut the pork belly into 1/2-inch-thick slices that are 2 inches in length.
- Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat.
- Add the pork belly to the pan and heat each side just until the meat is hot, 1 to 2 minutes. Serve immediately.