Recipe: Watermelon & Pork Belly 

click to enlarge CREATIVE COMMONS
  • Creative Commons

Serves 4-6

1 tablespoon salt
1 pound pork belly, skin removed and reserved
3 garlic cloves
1 Guajillo pepper, seeds removed
1 Ancho pepper, seeds removed
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup peanuts
1 teaspoon cumin, toasted
1 tablespoon sesame seeds
1/4 cup onion, diced
2 teaspoons vegetable oil

Garnishes
16 1 inch-by-1inch seedless watermelon cubes
16 cilantro leaves
16parsley leaves
1 teaspoon sesame seeds
1 teaspoon peanuts, toasted

 

Instructions

For Pork Belly

Heat oven to 200 degrees.
Sear pork belly, fat side down, in hot skillet at low heat for 15 minutes until fat renders and heavy color develops (almost burnt).
Take pork belly and put in an oven-safe braising dish or roasting pan. Add peppers, garlic, salt and water.
Cover in foil and cook at 200 degrees for 4 hours.
Skim fat, strain braising liquid and reserve.
Wrap pork belly in plastic wrap and put in refrigerator sandwiched between cookie trays weighed down with a few big cans to press for at least 2 hours.

For Mole Sauce

Add vegetable oil to cast-iron pan and sauté onions at medium heat until translucent.
Add sesame seeds, peanuts and cumin, lightly toast.
Add reserved braising liquid and cook at gentle heat for 30 minutes, reducing by half.
Purée, strain and reserve.

To Assemble

Cut pressed pork belly into 1 inch-by-2 inch rectangles and warm gently, fat-side down, in a pan with oil.
Gently warm sauce in small saucepan.
Arrange pork belly and watermelon on plate with 1 piece of belly per 2 pieces of watermelon.
Lightly dress with mole sauce and garnish with herbs and toasted seeds.

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