Asian Braised pork belly

Ingredients:

1 Piece 2-3 lbs pork belly
1/2 cup light soy sauce
2 Tbsp Balsamic vinegar
1/4 Cup mirin
1 Tbsp Sugar
1 Cup water
4 slices ginger
2 whole garlic cloves, peeled
3 star anise
6 cardamom pods

Glaze:
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp kosher salt

Method:

  1. Preheat Oven to 350°F
  2. Score fat of pork with sharp knife in 1 inch intervals. Place pork belly in a cold skillet, fat side down, and turn heat to high. Sear belly for 5 minutes or until browned, pouring off fat as needed.  Flip over and sear for 1 to 2 minutes or until second side is browned. Remove and place, fat side up, in an ovenproof casserole.
  3. Combine the 9 ingredients for the braise is a small pot and bring to boil. pour over pork belly. Liquid should come halfway up pork.  Cover tightly an d place in the oven. Braise for 4 hours, checking occasionally and basting with liquid.
  4. When pork is very tender and practically falling apart, turn oven up to 500°F
  5. Sprinkle top with brown sugar and kosher salt and bake, uncovered for 15 to 20 minutes(watching carefully to avoid burning) or until top is golden brown and skin is crisp.
  6. remove from the oven, place pork on a baking sheet, top with a clean skillet and weight down with cans, for about 15 minutes, to remove extra fat. Remove weights and return pork to marinade in a casserole and chill until fat congeals.
  7. Remove far from marinade. Cut pork into pieces, or slices, or shred, and reheat in cooking liquid, before serving. serve with rice and duck crepes.

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