BRAISED JERKED WILD PORK BELLY W/ ROASTED SPICY PINEAPPLE SAUCE

Updated: Sep 6


Jerked Wild Pork Belly
Photo by Larry White

Jerked pork is one of those sleeper dishes that I think people overlook way too often. I think that's mostly from folks using cheap pre-made jerk seasonings. Using a wet homemade jerk seasoning will definitely take your island pork game to the next level. This is an easy dish that can be made one day ahead of time and still be delicious. I like to serve mine on a steaming pile of coconut rice with herbs and toasted coconut.


Cooks Notes:

  • Don't have pork belly? You can also use pork loin. Just roast in the oven at 350 degrees F until your desired internal temperature. I'd also marinate the meat overnight since it's thicker.

  • Don't have wild pork? You can also use farmed pork.

  • Don't want to use your oven? The pork can be cooked in a slow cooker and the pineapple can be grilled.



Serves: 3 to 4 people

Special Equipment: Blender or food processor and butchers twine.



INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 to 2 pounds - pork belly (this is for skinless pork belly as I rarely shave my hogs)

  • 1 large onion, rough chopped

  • 1 tablespoon - honey

  • 1 - habanero pepper

  • 2 oranges - juiced

  • 1 lime - juiced

  • 1 teaspoon - chopped ginger

  • 1 tablespoon - red wine vinegar

  • 1 tablespoon - naturally brewed soy sauce

  • 6 - scallions

  • 6 - garlic cloves, peeled

  • 1/2 teaspoon - nutmeg

  • 1 teaspoon - ground allspice

  • 1/2 teaspoon - thyme leaves

  • 1 teaspoon - ground cinnamon (I prefer Mexican cinnamon)

  • 1 1/2 cups - fresh pineapple, large dice

  • 1 tablespoon - olive oil

  • butchers twine

DIRECTIONS

  1. For a fancy looking piece of pork, score the fat into 1/2" pattern with a sharp knife.

  2. To a blender, add all of the ingredients except the pork, pineapple, olive oil and onion. Puree until very smooth. Reserve 3 tablespoons of the puree for the pineapple sauce. Add the pork and remaining puree to a gallon freezer bag and marinate in your refrigerator for 4 to 8 hours.

  3. Pre-heat your oven to 325 degrees F. Remove the pork belly from the marinade and roll up tightly with the fat side facing outward. Tie at 1 inch intervals with butchers twine. Place the chopped onion in the bottom of an oven proof pan. Place the pork on top of the onions. Pour in enough water or stock to cover the pork belly half way. Pour any extra marinade over the pork (not the reserved 3 tablespoons).

  4. Cover the pork belly with a lid or aluminum foil. Braise for 2 hours. Remove the lid and cook for another hour or until very tender. Remove from the oven and set aside. Pre-heat your oven on broil. Place the pork in the middle of the oven and broil until nicely browned. Make sure you keep and eye on the pork as the fat can blacken fast (a little char is good). Set the pork to the side and leave your broiler on.

  5. Toss the pineapple in the 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Place in an oven proof pan and broil until lightly charred and tender. Let slightly cool down.

  6. Make the sauce. To a blender add the roasted pineapple and 3 tablespoons of reserved jerk sauce. Also add 1/4 cup of the onions from the pork braise. Puree until very smooth and season with salt and pepper.