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An inadequacy of cookbooks

I had thought I owned quite a decent range of cookbooks these days, but today, they have failed me. As far as I can tell, i do not have single cookbook which suggests ways to cook pork belly. As I kept flipping through book after book, I eventually recalled that pork belly is nigh impossible to find in the US. None of my NA cookbooks had recipes, but I thought surely, surely, the British ones will. But no.

I am not lacking in ways to cook the meat: various brochures from Olive and the packaging of the meat itself offer up suggestions. There's always the whole wide internet. Still, I am feeling as if my cookbook collection isn't quite up to snuff today.



Apr. 12th, 2011 02:59 pm (UTC)
I have just enough cookbooks in my life that I feel I ought to use them when possible, especially when trying out a new (to me for cooking at home) meat cut. Obscure ingredients - such as my new treasure trove of Australian bush herbs and spices - I will forgive the books for not mentioning. Also, I am still exceedingly cautious when it comes to cooking meat and trying to get it right - neither undercooked nor over. I find it easier to freely experiment with non-meat, because the degree of cooking necessary for safe sampling is so much wider.

I have all those ingredients in the house.... Marinaded first, or just cooked in the liquid? If I start now, it can have up to four hours cooking before dinner. Perhaps I will be asking the internet after all.
Apr. 12th, 2011 03:23 pm (UTC)
you can cook it in the liquid - and yes four hours is best :-)

I wonder if I typed up the recipe anywhere.
Apr. 12th, 2011 03:26 pm (UTC)
Apr. 12th, 2011 03:56 pm (UTC)
The first is very close to my recipe - except that I don't use garlic in it, and fry the pork first. I don't suppose it matters too much after simmering for three hours.

Of course you can replace the pak choi with whatever green vegetables you have to hand :-)
Apr. 12th, 2011 04:01 pm (UTC)
Certainly sounds like red-cooked pork (紅燒肉/hóng shāo ròu) to me. I blogged about this a while back (note the info on blanching).
Apr. 12th, 2011 04:07 pm (UTC)
Thank you for actually explaining the purpose of the initial blanching! I have seen it included as a step several times, without the recipe author bothering to say what the point of it was.
Apr. 12th, 2011 04:22 pm (UTC)
You're welcome! It's a very useful technique once you know what it's for.
Apr. 12th, 2011 04:10 pm (UTC)
It is very similar to red cooked pork - but I note from your article that there are many variations. When I do it you could call it "black cook pork"

I'm watching that video you linked to

A *lot* less soy sauce than my version. I can't see all his ingredients in the video... But the red colour looks far more apetising than mine :-)
Apr. 12th, 2011 04:41 pm (UTC)
Did you look at the Appetite For China post I linked to? I think the photo there is the most beautiful pork I've ever seen.

I think I prefer it without too much soy sauce, but I'm sure your version is good too!