Ingredients for Rolled Pork Belly:
1kg pork belly (skin on) either pre-rolled or cut from the slimmer half, skin scored
2 tbsp Fennel Seeds
2 tbsp Onion or Garlic Granules
1 tbsp English Mustard Powder
2 tbsp Course Sea Salt
3 tbsp olive oil
NB: to serve four, a 1½ - 2kg piece pork belly will do
Perfect Side Dishes:
Roasted Root Vegetables
Creamed Mash Potatoes
Beetroot & Fennel Salad
Rosted Fennel Tomatoes
Lay the Pork Belly on a chopping board skin-side up and score with a sharp knife cutting diagonally one way and then repeat the diagonal scoring in the other direction to make diamonds shapes. Turn the Pork Belly over so that the skin-side is down and rub fennel seeds and garlic or onion granules all over the flesh then neatly roll the meat into a joint surrounded by the skin, and using the aforementioned butchers' string, to tie the joint tightly at regular intervals to hold the joint together. Cover and pop into the fridge, leaving to marinate for a few hours or overnight.
If you have a pre-rolled joint, then simply stand the joint up as if it was a column, gently prise open the centre of the roll slightly and then pour in half the fennel seeds and garlic or onion granules. Then turn over and repeat - pushing the mixture as far into the roll as possible.
When you are ready to start cooking, preheat your oven to 200c/gas 6. Then rub the skin and sides of the joint with the olive oil, then rub over the salt and dry English mustard mix. Put the rolled pork belly joint on a wire rack and roast for 30 minutes. After this time, turn the heat down to 180c/gas 4 and continue roasting for a further hour.
Finally turn the heat back up to 220c/gas 7 to give the rolled pork belly joint a final blast for 30 minutes to finish crisping up the skin into exceptional crackling. Take out of the oven and then allow to rest under tin foil on your chopping board for 20 minutes.
To carve, it is easiest to slice off the crisp crackling as a whole piece and then the meat below can easily be cut into good sized slices. Serve with hunks of crackling and any of the above side dishes or mid-week fridge dinner accompaniments along with plenty of gravy.