British pork is a wonderful thing. We have some of the highest welfare standards in the world and – as cuts like pork belly are relatively cheap – it’s easy to justify a trip to a butcher to make sure you’re buying a really quality, native breed which has been reared outdoors. Even at a super-high end London butchers like Lidgate’s you’ll get a good couple of kilograms of pork belly (which will feed 6-8 people) for twenty quid, bargain!
Though pork belly meat is soft and succulent, the crackling will always be the prize. Making sure that the fat is dry and the heat is high are the two most important rules to good crackling … but introducing spices is my third rule, and the key to turning crackling from something already pretty special, into an absolute delicacy.
This combination of Fennel Seeds, Coriander Seeds and Tellicherry Peppercorns is, in my opinion, The Holy Trinity of pork cookery. Each brings something to the party and together creates a punchy spice blend which works so well with the fatty meat.
Pork Belly is a classic Sunday Roast and, in my opinion, a particularly good summer/autumn option (when you’re not quite ready to hunker down with roast beef and Yorkshire puddings). Serve this spiced pork belly with lashings of apple sauce and a British cider or crisp white wine for ultimate enjoyment!