PORK BELLY AND SWEET BRAISED FENNEL
- Cooking Time: 3 hrs
- Servings: 6-8
- Preparation Time: 40
- 1 4 - 5 lb pork belly
- 2 tablespoons fennel seeds
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 4 bulbs of fennel, cut into sixths, herby tops removed and reserved
- a small bunch of thyme, leaves removed
- 5 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
- olive oil
- White wine
Preheat the oven to its maximum temperature.
Using an extremely sharp knife, score the skin of the pork belly in deep vertical lines. Try to get them as close together as possible and as parallel as possible.
Crush the fennel seeds and 1 tablespoon of sea salt until you have a fine powder. Massage this powder into the skin.
In a bowl toss the fresh fennel, thyme, garlic, olive oil, and some salt and pepper. Place in the roasting pan.
Place the pork belly (skin side up) on top.
Put the pan in the preheated oven. After 10 minutes turn the heat down to 325 degrees and roast the pork for a further hour.
After 1 hour at 325 degrees, remove the pan from the oven and drain off the fat. Add the white wine and stir.
Remove the pan from the oven. Remove the fennel from the pan using a slotted spoon. Keep it warm.
Put the pork back into the oven for a further hour until the skin is golden and crisp. If the wine starts to evaporate during this time, add a splash more wine, or a splash of water.
Allow the pork to rest on a cutting board for 10 minutes.