May 31, 2021
I have a history of binge eating. Apparently I am obsessed with one particular ingredient and then prepare it in various ways for weeks until my husband usually begs me to stop. Some previous binges have included artichokes, fava beans, lamb, and more recently pork belly. Although I've always liked pork belly, my focus only became when our friend and chef Vincenzo Betulia added a new pork belly recipe to his Bar Tulia menu in Naples, Florida. Cooked to perfection, pork belly has everything from crispy skin to crumbling tender insides in your mouth.
Pork belly isn't sold everywhere, so you will likely need to go to a specialty store or butcher to find it. I ordered a large piece from D’Artagnan online. I cut the piece into portions for two when it got to my door and I've been playing with various preparations ever since. Even though I still enjoyed my pork belly, I made it, this Italian version stood out.
This recipe is best started the evening before you plan to cook and serve it, as the meat needs to be salted overnight. You can make your beans from scratch either by soaking them overnight and cooking them on the stove or using my simple Instant Pot method, or you can simplify things and use canned beans. I felt like the bright green sauce I made for this dish lightens it up and makes a great combo, but honestly the meat and beans are delicious without the sauce.
Deborah Mele 2021
1 kg pork belly, with skin
1 cup of coarse salt
6 sprigs of fresh rosemary
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 cup of olive oil
4 cups cooked cannellini beans (or 2 cans, drained) (see notes above)
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 teaspoon of chopped fresh rosemary
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
Salt & pepper to taste
1 cup of fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoon of capers
1 clove of garlic
1 lemon peeled and juiced
1/3 cup olive oil
Salt & pepper to taste
- Score the skin of the pork belly with a sharp knife and place in a shallow bowl.
- Rub the salt over the belly along with the garlic and half of the rosemary.
- Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
- The next day, rinse the salt off the pork and pat dry.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Cover with aluminum foil and roast in the oven for 4 hours.
- Let the pork cool, then remove the fat and cool completely, saving some of the fat for later.
- Weigh down the pork with a plate and a heavy can and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- While the pork is in the refrigerator, prepare the green sauce by mashing the parsley, anchovy, capers, lemon zest and juice, and olive oil until blended.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper and season. (Be careful with the salt as the anchovies and capers ate salty!)
- For the beans, in a heavy saucepan or pan, heat the olive oil to a simmer, then add the rosemary and garlic.
- Cook for a minute and then stir in the beans.
- Just cook until warmed through, then set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Take the pork belly out of the refrigerator and cut into 1-inch slices.
- Heat 1/4 cup of the reserved fat in a heavy ovenproof pan and place the pork belly skin-side down in the pan.
- Put the pork belly back in the oven until it is warmed through and the skin is crispy.
- Divide the beans into four individual flat bowls, cover with the pork belly slices and then drizzle with the green sauce.
- Serve immediately and enjoy!