Yelly Writes

Salt and chilli belly pork

The original version of this post is in my personal blog.

I used to buy salt and chilli belly pork from Asda prepacked, premade and frozen.  The pork was lovely, and the flavours were simple, uncomplicated and delicious.  There is nothing more enjoyable than straightforward goodness.  But then Asda chose to discontinue the frozen version of the salt and chilli belly pork that I liked (I’d tried the “fresh” refrigerated version and it didn’t taste as nice for some reason).  I’d lost my go-to freezer staple and I didn’t like the sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach.  It felt like I was losing a good friend for reasons unknown!

Luckily, I still had the packaging sleeve in my recycling bag so I looked at the ingredients list one evening and thought I could actually make the ingredient list a bit simpler.  The taste reminded me of rotisserie pork that was readily available in the Philippines, so I started from there.  Salt and pepper were the mainstays of this lovely Filipino “fast food” option.

There are only 5 ingredients to this lovely no-fail recipe.  Of course you can change the herb of choice added (I’ve tried dill and it works!), remove the chilli and replace it with just pepper, add soy sauce instead of salt…the permutations can go on forever!  Feel free to customise this recipe according to your tastes!  The beauty of this is that you can make it ahead of time and just store it in the fridge and take it out when you’re ready to cook it.  Oh, and like the supermarket version that inspired me to create this recipe, this freezes well too!  I usually have a pack in the freezer ready for when I can’t think of what to cook for supper.  It’s a reliable old stand-by dish!

Enjoy!

Oh and I’d love to hear how you got on with the recipe, if you try it!

Ingredients:Salt and chilli pork belly

  • 500g pork belly strips, rind removed
  • 1 heaping teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1-2 teaspoons chilli flakes (depending on how spicy you want it)
  • 3-4 tablespoons vegetable oil

Directions:

  1. Mix salt, spices and oil together in ziplock lock bag (other brands of resealable bags are acceptable!).  Add the belly pork slices and marinade for at least 2 hours, even better if marinated overnight.
  2. Preheat oven to 200C.
  3. Line a baking tin with parchment paper and lay the belly pork slices.  Place in the middle of the oven.  Bake the belly pork slices for 30 minutes, turning the belly pork slices halfway (you can also choose to cook this on the barbecue!).
  4. The belly pork slices will come out lovely and brown.  Cut into bite-sized chunks and serve.
  5. This is great with rice and greens — or if you’re watching carbs like me, just greens (like wilted kale or cabbage, or steamed pak choi or choi sum).

Salt and chilli pork with greens

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Yelly Eats

Pork puff pastry

Recipe in development!

Char siu in puff pastry…in my head it was going to work.  But I think I need to read up on how people do this so that I can see where I went wrong and adapt my recipe.

The filling works though so that’s one thing that went right!

Pork puff pastry trial

Yelly Eats

Easy-peasy cornbread V2!

I did a slow-cooked joint of pork on the weekend.  I haven’t used my dry rub recipe in ages and I thought it was time I did.  I dusted off the dry rub recipe and had a critical look at ingredients.  I did a little tweaking and the pork turned out even better than I remembered.  The barbecue sauce that was made out of the leftover barbecue rub tasted even better as well.

But the dry rub recipe wasn’t the only recipe that experienced a few tweaks.  When one does a slow roast with barbecue sauce, the best accompaniment is cornbread.  I looked at my original cornbread recipe and I thought the flavours needed enhancing.  The new recipe has a better sweet-salty balance and I love my cornbread slightly crumbly and this new tweak added the right amount of crumble to my cornbread.

Here’s the tweaked recipe:

Ingredients:Cornbread

  • 200g polenta (fine ground)
  • 150g all-purpose flour
  • 120g sugar
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 280ml buttermilk
  • 80ml vegetable oil
  • 1 large egg

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 200C.
  2. Prepare 12 x 7.5 pan by lining with baking paper and greasing with butter and set aside.
  3. Mix polenta, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a mixing bowl with a balloon whisk until well-combined.  Set aside.
  4. Beat egg, milk and vegetable oil together until well-combined.  Add to polenta mixture in 3 parts.  Once liquid mixture and dry mixture has been mixed together completely, allow to sit for 30 minutes so that polenta can absorb the liquid.
  5. Place in oven and cook for 20-22 minutes, or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
  6. This recipe makes 18-20 squares.

 

Yelly Eats

Croque Madame Muffins

Rachel Khoo burst into the TV cooking scene early this year with her little Paris kitchen exploits.  When I first saw the TV adverts for her show on the Beeb, I wondered if it was all too good to be true.  Everything was neat, tidy and oh-so-trés-Français.  But I was very (very!) curious so I made sure her show was sky-plussed.

I loved everything about the show.  It somehow de-mystified french cooking for me and seemed to make it more accessible.  I’ve got Julia Child’s Mastering The Art of French Cooking, but have never tried any of the recipes.  French cuisine is, really, quite daunting (to me it is, anyway).  I’ve cracked the book spine by reading it but haven’t really had the courage to actually try one of the recipes (yes, I know I really should!).

Because I enjoyed the show and the recipes that were featured (and thought I’d be a dab hand at trying out the recipes) I bought Rachel’s book and it really is quite adorable.  The illustrations in the book are completely hers (and considering her visual arts background, I wasn’t surprised that the little illustrations were good, and really quite refreshing to see in a cook book!). 

The first recipe I’ve tried and have always come back to in the cookbook is the recipe for croque madame muffins.  They are simple to make and they taste absolutely scrummy.  There are only 6 ingredients: bread, butter, eggs, ham, cheese and bechamel sauce!  If you are considering buying this book, do, if only for the croque madame muffin recipe!  They’re wonderfully tasty and oh-so-easy to make.  And, they do, come out quite beautifully.  When you pull them out of the oven and see their lovely golden bakedness, you can’t help but say, “Oh wow!  I made that!”