Start November off right. Yeah, it’s cold outside. It’s most likely cloudy. The last time you saw the sun was a week ago. But it’s not all bad. Fall flavors are delicious, and you should treat yourself. Think umami, your sixth sense. Savory is in!
This week, on Foodie Next Door, I show you how to prepare pork belly with miso caramel.
Just remember, there’s a foodie in all of us
Pork Belly With Miso Caramel
- 2 pounds pork belly
- ¾ cup kosher salt
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
For miso caramel
- ¼ cup white miso paste
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar
- Scant 2 tablespoons water (enough to make the sugar the consistency of wet sand)
- Cure the pork. Mix salt and sugar together, and cover both sides of the pork belly. Rub the mixture all over the surface of the belly, and discard any cure mixture left over. Place in refrigerator for at least 12 hours.
- Pre-heat oven to 200 F.
- Remove the belly from the refrigerator, and thoroughly rinse off all the cure mixture. Pat completely dry with paper towels.
- Place pork belly fat side up in a baking dish, and bake uncovered for 2 hours.
- After 2 hours, increase the heat to 400 F, and bake for another 20 minutes. Every 5 minutes, use a large basting syringe to baste the top of the belly with the rendered fat. Be careful not to burn yourself because the fat is very hot and will spatter.
- In a medium saucepan, combine water and sugar over medium heat. The consistency should be equivalent to wet sand.
- Add in cream of tartar (the cream of tartar aids in preventing crystallization in the caramel), and stir with a wooden spoon or spatula to combine. Cover with a clear lid if you have one. Bring the mixture to a boil, and allow to boil vigorously for 5 to 8 minutes or until it begins to turn an amber, caramel color. Keep an eye on it because it will burn very quickly once it starts to turn color.
- Once the caramel is a uniform dark amber color, remove from the heat, and carefully add in heavy cream and miso paste. Mix together with a whisk.
- Keep stirring the mixture, and put back on the heat for another 3 minutes or just long enough for the miso and cream to evenly distribute in the caramel and to acquire a smooth consistency.
- Take the saucepan off of the heat to let it cool for several minutes.
- Use the caramel, and brush a thick layer onto the top of pork belly while it is still in the oven. Leave the belly to caramelize for 2 more minutes, then remove from the oven to cool.
- If time permits, it’s best to chill the cooked belly for 3 hours because it allows for you to slice it in nice, clean pieces. Then you can return the chilled, sliced belly to a 350 F oven, and brush with the miso caramel. You’ll get beautiful slices this way. If you don’t have the time, it will not affect the flavor; your slices just may not be as pristine.
- Right before serving, brush two more coats of the caramel onto the surface of the crisped, warm belly. Serve as is or with some sliced scallions.