The easiest roasted pork belly with cracklings you will ever make. No poking and scoring the skin to get those crackles (that still never showed up!). Never fails to give you that nice crunchy crackles EVERY TIME !
Another thing I wanted to check off the to-cook-list. And finally, I got to check it off. I’ve done this roast pork belly with cracklings for handful times and failed that many times too !! The most desirable thing to me (and many others) when it comes to roasted pork belly is the cracklings. I had never been able to create those crispy cracklings on the skin. I’ve tried many methods. Poking the skin and then dehydrate the skin overnight. Didn’t turn out good. Then I tried scoring the skin with a knife and then dehydrate the skin overnight. Still the same result. I even use a hair dryer to blow dry the skin because I thought it wasn’t dry enough!!!! I was a little bit devastated.
Seriously, what’s so difficult about this cracklings thing!! Actually, it’s not !! All you need is to pour some salt on top of that skin and magic happens !! Salt draws out moisture! AHA!! I didn’t even bother to poke or score the skin or blow dry it this time. I didn’t even pre-boil the meat and do other extra works I used to do. The meat underneath the skin comes out still moist and the skin crackled perfectly. FINALLY !! I almost cried with joy when I saw the crackles! Who wouldn’t !! My husband said I finally nailed it!! Yes I DID !! BOOKMARK IT if you haven’t already !!
WHY DOES THIS RECIPE WORK WITHOUT MUCH FUSS?
It’s all in the science. The salt draws moisture out from the skin, which is important to form that crackles. I have made this siu yuk using this method at least 7 times and it hasn’t failed me so far!!!! I seriously don’t know why people are still poking, scoring, and deep-frying the pork belly when all you need to do is pour that damn salt on top of the skin 🙂
Sio Bak / Siu Yuk / Roasted pork belly with cracklings
To prepare the day before:
Mix the wine, brown sugar, five-spice powder (if using) and salt in a small bowl. Place the pork belly in a container and gently pour in the marinade and use your hand to kinda rub the marinade into the meat and leave the skin out. Once you are done, pat the skin dry and put in the refrigerator without cover for at least 12 hours
When ready to be roasted, preheat your oven to 375 F. Line your baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil and then place a roasting rack on top of it. Place another layer of aluminum foil on top of the roasting rack. Transfer the pork belly to the aluminum foil and fold all the sides up, leaving about 1-inch on top. Gently pour the salt on top of the skin to form about 1/2-inch of salt layer. Pop it into the oven and let it roast for the next 1 hour and 30 minutes
After 1 hour and 30 minutes, remove from the oven and gently remove the crust of salt off the skin. Brush the skin with some cooking oil. Carefully fold the aluminum foil down a little bit and then place the pork belly at the lowest rack of the oven and turn the boiler to low. This is the part when the cracklings start to form. Watch it carefully, as you don't want them to burn. Some spots may get burn quicker than the others, I use an aluminum foil to cover the part that has crackled and started to get burn. Let it roast until you are happy with the cracklings. Remove from the oven and let it sit for at least 15 minutes before slicing
When ready to slice them, I found it easier to turn the skin side down on the chopping board and slice while applying gentle pressure on the knife to break off the pieces. Serve with your favorite chili sauce or on its own
This can be served on its own or with rice, noodles (I make everything work with noodles), sandwiches (banh mi came to my mind) 🙂