Crispy roast pork belly and soft fennel are a match made in heaven in this seasonal recipe. The key to using pork belly is to cook it slowly – this makes sure the meat is wonderfully tender, with a foil lid keeping all the steam inside. The fragrant fennel seeds in this recipe infuse the pork as it cooks, alongside the aromatic star anise and zesty orange juice. To get that crunchy crackling, blast it uncovered in the oven towards the end of the cooking process to get a crisp top. Serve this beautiful dish with creamy mash and crispy sautéed kale.
Dry the skin of the pork with kitchen towel and cut into 4 individual portions. Return the pork to the roasting tray and increase the oven temperature to 230°C, 450°F, Gas Mark 8. Cook, uncovered, for 20 – 25 minutes or until the skin crisps up. Remove from the oven and allow the meat to rest for 10 minutes before serving, the skin will crisp up further in this time.
Meanwhile, to make the sauce, skim the fat from the top of meat juices and discard. Sieve the juices into a saucepan, add the remaining stock, orange juice, soy sauce, Fennel Seeds and cornflour. Heat the sauce on high until it begins to thicken, then reduce to a simmer. Remove the skin from the orange and cut into segments. Add to the sauce and heat through.
Serve the pork on a bed of mustard mash and sautéed curly kale. Drizzle generously with the sauce and serve immediately.
Take the pork out of the oven and remove from the roasting tray. De-glaze the tray with a little of the remaining stock if required, scrape up any of the meat juices, pour into a jug and reserve.
Chicken Consommé is a soup made from the clear stock and juices of poultry which is used within recipes to add flavour, without affecting the colour and appearance of a dish. Available in tins in large supermarkets, but if you can’t find it, simply use chicken stock.
Pre-heat the oven to 170°C, 325°F, Gas Mark 3.
Score the skin of the pork in a diamond pattern, rub with olive oil and season with Salt and Black Pepper. Place in a roasting tin and add the Star Anise, Garlic, 125ml (4fl oz) chicken consommé or stock, zest of half the orange and 1 tsp of the Fennel Seed. Cover tightly with foil and bake for 1½ hours. After this time remove the foil and bake for a further 1 hour, uncovered.
For delicious mustard mash, simply crush Schwartz Mustard Seeds and mix with a little water or milk to release the flavour. Stir into mashed potatoes with a generous knob of butter. For the kale, sauté sliced red onion and curly kale in a little oil for 10 minutes, season with a dash of soy sauce.