Several weeks back we made a trip to the Korean market to buy some fixings for a quick & easy weekend meal of pre-marinated spicy pork in lettuce cups. While there, I picked up a package of pre-sliced pork belly and stuck it in the fridge. When I took it out of the freezer a few days ago I had grand plans to turn it into a fabulous breakfast, but our weekend mornings got away from us and I wanted to use it up before it went bad. (Unfortunately, things going bad in our fridge is a problem of mine since my food intentions don't always make it to reality.)
Based on a recipe I found online, I was going to fry it up this afternoon for some crispy pork belly cubes, but when I went to turn on the fan on our microhood, all heck broke loose and now none of the buttons work. (Our landlord is super responsive and has already made calls to get it fixed.) Since I don't dare fry pork without a hood fan, I decided on Plan B - baked pork belly in a concoction of traditionally Asian ingredients.
(Side note: Having close friends who are Japanese, Chinese, and Korean, I tend to feel bad using "Asian" as a catch all naming convention for any meal that has a set list of ingredients often thought to be of the asian variety because anyone that has eaten a variety of these types of cuisines knows that it's vasty different, despite a common set of ingredients.)
Normally, when baking pork belly I wouldn't have it cut up but I'd already done so when I had planned to fry it. I covered the pork belly in a mixture of sesame oil, soy sauce, honey, rice vinegar, and hoisin sauce and threw it in the oven, hoping for the best. I'm happy to report that they taste great!
1/2 cup of honey
1/2 cup of soy sauce
1/4 cup of rice vinegar
1 tablespoons of sesame oil
2 tablespoons of hoisin sauce (not pictured, above)
1 pound of pork belly, cut into cubes or strips
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
Mix all ingredients above together in bowl
Place all ingredients in an oven safe baking dish
Bake for 40 minutes, then flip
Bake for 20 more minutes
Remove from oven & serve
We ended up eating it as part of a lunch that was also made up of left over oshinko and kimchee from last night's homemade sushi fest at our friends' house.
Definitely a delicious new way to eat our favorite animal.