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Essential Char-Sui Style Pork Belly possibly leading to Philipino Belly Adobo


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Preheat Sous-Vide to 68.3 degs  c

Large resealable freezer Bag

  • 900g Fresh Pork belly (rind on or off)
  • 6 tbsp. Soy sauce
  • 6 tbsp. of Sake*
  • 1 tbsp. liquid honey
  • 2 spring onions , thinly sliced
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped ginger root

* Sake -for if you want to leave booze out of the equation all together, you can substitute rice wine vinegar mixed with water or white grape juice for the sake at a 1 to 3 part ratio

  1. If the pork belly has the rind attached, use a sharp paring knife to score it at 2.5cm intervals across the belly. Repeat in the opposite direction scoring at 90-degree angle to the first set of slashed to leave a diamond patter.
  2. In a heat proof glass measuring cup or small saucepan, stir together soy sauce, Sake* and honey. To cook some of the alcohol in the sake, microwave on high for 2 minutes or bring to the boil on the stove over medium heat for about 2 mins. remove from the heat and stir in spring onions and ginger. Refrigerate for 10 mins or until chilled
  3. Transfer Pork Belly and soy sauce mixture to zip freezer bag.
  4. Seal bag and immerse in pre heated water bath using immersion method. Cook for 10 - 12 hours
  5. Remove bag from hot water bath, transfer to ice bath and chill for 30 mins
  6. Remove pork belly from bag, reserve cooking liquid*, Pat dry with paper towels and remove skin
  7. Preheat grill or BBQ, Place pork belly on baking sheet turning once and until heated through and lightly brown or griddle lightly until lightly browned, Slice and serve on warm plates

* the reserved cooking liquid is use dot make Filipino Belly Adobo and Babi Kecap. You can also use it to season Ramen broth. In all 3 cases strain the liquid through fine mesh sieve before using. It will keep in fridge for at least 7 days a or frozen for up to 12 months

Scale up, easily double the recipe to suit your needs, use two bags if you double

To make Ahead, prepare through step 5 Refrigerate for up to one week of freeze for up to 6 months. To use frozen pork bellies thaw in refrigerator overnight then proceed with step 6.

Variation, Char-Sui Pork Shoulder. Boneless pork shoulder also works well inn this recipe. Choose a piece that is about the same weight shaped like a brick (sous-vide cooking times are determined by shape and thickness of food). reduce the hot water bath temperature to 65.6 degs c. Cook for 21 hours to ensure tenderness.

More twist of Pork Belly, to make a European style preparation such as pork belly with lentils or to tuck pork belly into chocroute garnie, use this recipe but after Step 1, brine the pork for 1 to 2 days, omit steps 2 and 3 and proceed with the recipe, committing step 7 if desired.


Photos to follow


Edited by Justin
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Will cook this overnight an then chill as off to Southwold tomorrow, Can then make the Philipino Belly Adobo when we get back from Southwold as it will only take 2 mins to cook, remember it is already been cooked overnight and chilled.

Philipino Belly Adobo

  • 1 Batch Pork Essential Char-Sui style pork belly
  • 60 mil Cider vinegar
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped garlic
  • 1 onion halved and finely slices
  • 2 tbsp grated piloncillo sugar*
  • 1 1/2 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 bay leaves

* piloncillo is a Latin American unrefined sugar made by boiling down sugar cane. Palm sugar is more appropriate for Philipino cuisine but it can be difficult to get. Piloncillo comes in cones and is easily grated with a box grater, Just grate what you need and store rest in airtight container in cool dark place.. Piloncillo has a nice caramel and molasses note, you can substitute turbinado or muscovado in a pinch

  1. Cut prepared pork belly into 1-inch chunks, leaving rind on (if present). Set aside
  2. In large heavy-bottomed skillet, combine pork belly, vinegar, garlic, onion, sugar, pepper and bay leaves. Bring to the boil over medium heat and boil for 5 mins
  3. Reduce heat to medium and simmer, adjusting the heat as necessary to maintain a slow simmer and stirring occasionally, for 20 to 25 mins, until juices are reduced to a sticky caramelised glaze and the pork is tender but not falling apart (The cooking time will depend on the diameter of your skillet, go larger if you are unsure). to prevent burning, check the mixture constantly as the juices reduce. If the pork is ready (i.e. tender but not falling apart before the sauce is ready, transfer pork to plate and cover, then continue to reduce the sauce to glaze. If the sauce is ready but not the pork add a little water to the skillet, a little at a time to keep the sauce from over reducing. You want a sticky glaze
  4. Serve pork on a little rice and with okra or tender broccoli stems

It is best to make this recipe the same day you plan to eat it. Prepare the pork belly in advance

Scale up, you can easily halve or double this recipe

Variation, Adding 1 or 2 ground small dried chilies will add a nice spice heat, if desired.

You can also make this with the leaner variation Char-Sui Pork Shoulder



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Delicious. Apple soy sauce pork. Dare I say what you might expect on a philipino meal.


Char duo


Cooking adobo


I added water several times to get the pork right and when I eventually boiled off water to glaze then left with stock tender pork pieces. I 7sed cast iron skillet on low to medium heat. I tweaked as appropriate 


Dinner is served


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