Like many in the Paleo community, I was fortunate enough to receive a review copy of the fabulous Beyond Bacon. Following their debut publication, Eat Like A Dinosaur, Matt & Stacy of Paleo Parents have outdone themselves creating a volume of research, instruction and original recipes dedicated to the humble swine. Beyond Bacon hits the shelves on July 2; make sure you get one. This book will sit on my kitchen counter smack between The Joy of Cooking and The Flavor Bible–my two favorite cookbooks–for years to come.
I sat down this morning with a cup of coffee and a stack of sticky notes, flagging recipe after recipe that perked my interest. All reviewers are pouring over which recipes speak to them and which they’d like to highlight first. After nearly running out of sticky notes, I definitely had my favorites picked out. For me, I wanted to try something that was foreign. Pork belly it is! I’ve had it before at Korean BBQ joints (there are almost as many of those as there are pho places in my neck of the woods), but never made a habit of making it at home.
As you can see… it turned out pretty darn good.
Cracklin’ Pork Belly is simple to make! The spice blend is incredibly unique, boasting ground clove and cinnamon with chili powder and cumin. I would have never thought of this!
Now that I had this fabulous hunk of distinctly seasoned roasted pig, I needed to find a way to translate it into dinner. Thankfully, my refrigerator was cooperating tonight–a pound of Brussels sprouts was ready and waiting!
BRUSSELS SPROUTS AND CRACKLIN’ PORK BELLY
1 pound of Brussels sprouts
5 or 6 half-inch thick slices of Cracklin’ Pork Belly
2 cloves garlic
Celtic sea salt and fresh black pepper, to taste
Heat a skillet or sauté pan to medium high heat. Cut the pork belly slices into thirds and place in the hot pan in a single layer.
While the pork sears, prepare the Brussels sprouts by trimming the ends and cutting the head in half. Peel the garlic cloves and mince well.
When the pork has browned on one side, flip all of the pieces over and reduce the heat to medium. Pour the trimmed and halved Brussels sprouts over the pork, then top with the minced garlic, a pinch of Celtic sea salt and a few grinds of black pepper. Season according to your preference. Do not mix.
Cover the pan and let steam for 10 minutes. The Brussels sprouts will be just done, a perfect accompaniment to twice cooked, fatty pork belly.
I hope you get your copy of Beyond Bacon on July 2nd! And when (not if) you do, don’t be afraid to step out of your usual routine and make something foreign to you as well. You can trust that these recipes are good for it.