cookMEAT

VAN TRAN & ANH VU / RECIPESPhoto: YUKI SUGIURA

SERVES
4

INGREDIENTS

2 slices fresh ginger
300g (10½oz) slab pork belly
200ml (7fl oz) coconut milk

FOR THE MARINADE:
1 tbsp gia vi (a mix of 2 parts sugar, 1 part sea salt, 1 part ground black pepper, 1 part garlic powder)
2 tbsp fish sauce
1 tsp chopped shallot

FOR THE CARAMEL SAUCE:
4 tsp sugar

TO SERVE
Lettuce or watercress
Slices of pineapple
Sliced cucumber

CARAMELISED BRAISED PORK BELLY RECIPE

Bring a large pan of water to a boil and throw in the ginger. Add the pork (don’t cut it into chunks at this stage or it will cook too quickly and lose its sweetness) and cook for three to four minutes over a high heat to blanch the meat. Drain.
Mix together the marinade ingredients. Slice the pork belly into 2cm (¾in) chunks, rub in the marinade, then cover and leave for at least 15 minutes.
Put the sugar in a heavy-bottomed pan or cast-iron casserole. Place over a medium heat, without stirring, for two to three minutes, then reduce the heat and stir constantly until no sugar grains are visible, for two to three minutes. The sugar will melt and turn golden – pay attention to the colour of the caramel under the bubbles. Add 200ml (7fl oz) hot water and bring to a boil. Don’t worry if the sugar hardens on contact with the water; it will re-melt.
Add the marinated pork to the caramel pan, coating all the meat with the caramel sauce. Stir in the coconut milk, then leave it for a minute. Taste and add more fish sauce or sugar if necessary, depending on whether it’s too sweet or salty.
Reduce the heat and simmer for about 30 minutes, until the liquid has reduced and thickened. Serve with white rice and the red cabbage and beansprout salad above.r, best of all, just like a traditional Sunday roast with all the trimmings.

EXTRACT FROM ‘THE VIETNAMESE MARKET COOKBOOK’ (SQUARE PEG, £20), BY VAN TRAN AND ANH VU,

AVAILABLE TO PURCHASE HERE