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Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Braised belly of pork

Pork belly, mash and pureed (frozen) minted peas. I was organising my freezer when I came across a couple of portions of our home made braised pork belly.  What a delicious treat for midweek - after defrosting, all we had to do was heat thoroughly in a frying pan. We even had a couple of portions of fluffy mash tucked away in the freezer! 
I'm not sure about the number of calories? But, most of the fat was rendered out, and the result was more like shoulder of pork.  
To cook, we removed the skin/ribs from the pork belly and placed the meat in a large stockpot filled with our favourite stock vegetables (or whatever you have to hand).  We used: carrot, onion, celery, garlic, leek, bayleaf, thyme and rosemary (no salt and pepper).  Cover the meat with stock or water.  If you have the ribs, throw them in too. The more flavours you have at this stage, the tastier the dish.  We like to use beef stock.  Bring to the boil and simmer for as long as you can - the longer the better (we simmered ours for 5 hours). 
When cooked, remove and place meat on a flat baking tray.  Place another flat baking tray on top and add some weight to press the meat together.  After the long cooking, a lot of the fat has disappeared and this 'pressing' stage compresses the meat.  
Leave for a couple of hours until ready to serve.
To serve:  Cut into squares and simply fry in a pan containing a little oil/butter.  Season as you go along!  Cook until the meat is heated through and the outside is nice and crispy.  
This is an economical dish as it can serve a large number of people at a small cost. When we made ours, there was around 8 large portions - some of which were frozen.

If you would like to know more about how we have achieved over 6.5 stone weight loss eating all this wonderful food - see OUR IDEA

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