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Braised Pork Belly with Blueberry Puree

[ 0 ] April 2, 2019 |
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Recipe courtesy of Chef Jeremy Kulers.
as seen on episode “SoCo | Farm to Table“, Season 8

Flavor, NC | SoCo| Braised Pork Belly with Blueberry PureeFor the Pork Brine (good for 3 to 8 lbs. of pork)

Ingredients:

  • 1 gallon water
  • 1 cup Morton’s kosher salt
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 12 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • ½ cup Dijon mustard

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in a pot over medium high to high heat and bring to a boil for 1 minute. Stir to dissolve salt and sugar. Allow to cool completely before using.

For the  Blueberry Purée

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cup fresh blueberries, rinsed and stemmed
  • 3 Tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 ½ Tablespoons lemon juice
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • small pinch salt

Directions:

In a food processor, process all ingredients until smooth—about 30 to 45 seconds. Press purée through a fine mesh sieve to remove skins and seeds, or don’t if you prefer something more rustic.

For the Braised Pork Belly

Ingredients:

  • 3 to 8 lbs. fresh or thawed skinless pork belly, cut into 2 or 3 lb. pieces
  • 2 cups white wine

Directions:

In a non-reactive container, place belly and cover with the brine. If the belly wants to float, use a water-filled zip top freezer bag or some dinner plates to weigh it down. Place the container in the refrigerator for 10-12 hours.

Preheat oven to 300F. Remove belly from brine and rinse under cool water.
Place belly pieces in a single layer in a roasting pan with at least 2” tall sides. Add 2 cups of water or white wine, and cover with a layer of plastic wrap, then a layer of foil. Braise for about 2 ½ to 3 hours. The meat should be tender, and the entire piece of belly should jiggle like jello when shaken lightly. If the belly is neither tender nor jiggly, braise for another 20 to 30 minutes and check it again.

Allow belly to cool for about an hour, and transfer it to a sheet tray.
Refrigerate overnight. Portion cooled belly into roughly 2 ½ cubes.

Preheat a cast iron skillet over medium to medium-high heat. Sear the belly cubes on all 6 sides until golden and beautiful. Move finished pieces to a sheet tray and generously coat with maple syrup.

To plate: spoon about 2 Tablespoons of blueberry purée on the plate; and place the seared, belly on top. Garnish the belly cube with
chopped peanuts or crushed Capt’n Crunch cereal—or whatever crunchy ingredient you like. It’s a free country.

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