Pork Belly and White Bean “stew” with Polenta

If you are drooling thinking about nice crispy pork belly, then I am sorry, but avert your eyes!
Sometimes I am hesitant to post a recipe for something that didn’t come out exactly as I had hoped it would. But, I figured its worth adding anyway, with suggestions on how to make it better or change it to suit you. This dish is a perfect example. I have never cooked with Pork Belly before, and I had a great recipe for pork belly sliders and a sweat Asian slaw, BUT I didn’t have all the ingredients, hence my attempt at this meal.

This dish was based on a recipe I found at random, and maybe I should have thought twice about the cooking method, and realized it wouldn’t yield crispy pork and a nice stew. Anyway, before I get into the recipe, here is my suggestion how to fix change this recipe for the better.
First off, I’d suggest making the white bean stew, or ragout, separately from the pork, or at the very least remove the pork to get it extra crispy. Second, I think that you want to cut off a bit more of the fat from the belly meat, leaving only about half of an inch after the meat end. And finally, I would braise the meat to ensure it is tender, and then cook it in a pan, or the same pot (dutch oven) to ensure its crispy.

I plan on purchasing some more pork belly this week and cooking it in a different manor, and hopefully, a superior recipe. I hope you can still enjoy this dish with the slight variations above.

Here is the recipe, as cooked:
Serves 4 (though I halved it, to serve 2, below ingredients serves 4)
Based on a recipe from Cookit Simply
1.75 lbs pork belly, fat trimmed slightly, cut into 1 inch cubes
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, diced
3 tablespoons flour
2 cups chicken stock
4 carrots, diced
Zest of 1 lemon
1 can white beans (drained and washed)
1/2 teaspoon corriander
1/2 teaspoon tumeric
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
4 servings of quick cook polenta (use box directions)
Heat oven to 325
Fry pork in large skillet or dutch oven over medium heat until browned on all sides, about 5 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in pan and add onion and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Mix flour with remaining oil and then add to pan. Lower heat to low and cook 1-2 minutes. Stir in stock slowly, bring to boil and then back down to a simmer until sauce thickens. About 5-7 minutes.
Add carrots, lemon zest, beans, spices and season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring to boil and cook for 10 minutes. Place dutch oven into oven and cook for 2 hours. Or, if not using dutch oven, place in a casserole dish and cook 2 hours.

After two hours, serve with polenta and enjoy!

About Evan Halperin

I like to eat. I like to cook. I like to eat what I cook. Now, I will share with you what I like to cook. My wife and I may be a vegetarian and a carnivore, but it doesn’t mean we can’t cook a nice meal with both, without compromising taste. I will share my creative meals of the Carnivore and the Vegetarian.
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6 Responses to Pork Belly and White Bean “stew” with Polenta

  1. Anonymous says:

    Luckily for you, the vegetarian was on a business trip & did not have to smell the pork belly cooking. Cheers. Herb1419

  2. Mmm this looks totally delicious!

  3. Thanks. I think with a few modifications, it would even be better!

  4. DailyChef says:

    drool* I might try this with a different type of beans, since I'm not biggest fan of white beans…but this looks so good!

  5. gwen says:

    looks delicious a few minor changes, i added some oregano as i love it on pork. I may get back with you after i’m done. thanks for the recipe

  6. yea, some oregano would give some nice additional flavor. enjoy!

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