Crispy Pork Belly

Crispy Pork is sure going to be a winner on anyone’s table (of course, except those that don’t eat meat!). Getting a crisp skin is surprisingly easier than you think. In order for a skin to crisp up, it needs to have enough air to circulate in order to “puff up”. This method involves slow cooking the meat portion in a milk broth, to tenderize and have a melt-in-your-mouth crispy pork.

The key to a crispy skin is to dry the skin out for as long as possible. When you walk past a Chinese food stall, you always will be guaranteed to see meat hanging in front of the window. A very Cantonese method of preparation is to DRY DRY DRY. You would leave meats out to dry for days before roasting – that’s the best way to get a perfectly roast skin. Since we don’t have that luxury, drying it out in your fridge uncovered for a few hours will still result in a delicious crisp skin. 

Crispy Pork Belly
Prep Time
15 mins
Cook Time
3 hrs
Resting time
2 hrs
Total Time
3 hrs 15 mins

It’s not hard to make, you just need time! Get the most crispy pork skin your mouth has ever tasted

Servings: 4 people
  • 780 g Pork Belly piece bone off – this was in two slices ensure this has a good fat to meat ratio i.e. 60% fat to meat – ask your butcher to score this or poke skin deeply all over
  • 1-2 Tbsp Xiao Shing Wine to coat the meat
  • 2-3 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • ½ tsp black ground pepper
  • ½ garlic powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp light brown sugar
For the skin
  • 1-2 tsp white vinegar to coat your pork skin
  • 1-2 tsp kosher/himalayan salt make sure you don’t put too much!
Stock Milk Mix
  • 3 thick slices of ginger
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic slightly smashes
  • 1 shallot or white onion cut in half
  • 1 ½ Tbsp whole black peppercorns
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon quill
  • 3 medium dried bay leaves
  • 2 cups / 750ml chicken stock OXO
  • 2 cups milk
  • More milk to cover meat while cooking
  1. Score your skin – don’t go too deep but ensure that the cuts are nice and pronounced. Make sure you use a sharp knife/ sharpen your knife! Or a craft knife is sort of amazing to use. Also make sure you poke along the pork, this makes your skin puffy so don’t forget this. Using a brush – use enough to coat the skin, rub in the salt, leave to dry then add another layer of vinegar
  2. Combine your marinade and rub into the pork meat. Leave to marinate in the fridge for 2 hours UNcovered – do not put cling film / anything over it. This will ensure it drys out nicely. It is best to do this overnight – some people leave it until 3 days later. Take out 30 mins before to get the pork back to room temperature.
  3. Preheat oven to fan bake on 240C at the second lowest rack in your oven, align your lines of pork belly (around 3-4 cm in width) we had two pieces on a metal pan and let roast and for the skin start to crackle for 25-30 minutes or until nicely crackled (if not fully crackled after 30-35 mins you can always grill it after as well)
  4. Have your stock concoction ready while the pork is cooking, once it’s done take out the tray – lower the oven to 160C fan bake and pour your mix into the deep tray careful not to wet the skin. It should cover the meat but not the skin so add more or less according to this.
  5. Leave to slow cook for 2 hours – checking every 30 mins if there needs to be more milk added to the tray, add when necessary. Once will probably be enough as you won’t want to tamper with the temp too much.
  6. After the 2 hours, take out the pork which should have very translucent fat, put a roasting rack inside the deep tray and tip out any of the now curdled stock milk mix out until it just reaches the top of the rack. Place your pork onto the rack, now over your stock.
  7. Put into the oven on grill (200C) and put the pork in for 15-30 minutes depending on how well your pork crackles. If need be move the pork over if some bits are stubborn.
Recipe Notes

Handy to have: Craft knife to score + poke your skin, otherwise a sharp knife is fine.

Cut incisions into the meat – best to do this relevant to how you want to serve your pork / bigger slices are better to keep your meat together so keep that in mind


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