Braised Pork Belly Noodle Soup: A Flavorful Delight

Braised Pork Belly Noodle Soup

If you’re a fan of rich and satisfying dishes, then this recipe for Braised Pork Belly Noodle Soup is a must-try. With its succulent pork belly, aromatic spices, and toothsome noodles, this dish is sure to impress even the most discerning palates. Join us as we take you through the step-by-step process of creating this culinary masterpiece.

Blancing the Pork Belly

To begin, fill a pot with 2.5 liters of water and add your pork belly, along with slices of ginger, a drizzle of Chinese cooking wine, and Sichuan peppercorns. Bring the water to a boil, then reduce the heat and let it simmer for 15 minutes. Once the pork is cooked, poke holes in the skin with a fork and wipe away any leaked fat. Apply some dark soy sauce to the surface for color.

Blancing the Pork Belly

Dehydrating the Pork Skin

To dehydrate the pork skin, you have a couple of options. If you have a dehydrator, that’s ideal. If not, you can use a fan or place the pork belly in the refrigerator, skin exposed, for 24 hours. After this process, the skin should feel firm and slightly bouncy.

Frying the Pork Belly

In a wok, heat 1/3 cup of oil to 380°F. Carefully place the pork belly in the wok, skin side down, and cover immediately to prevent oil splashing. Fry each side for a couple of minutes over medium-low heat, creating a flavorful foundation with the Maillard reaction. You can also use an air fryer for this process.

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Frying the Pork Belly

Preparing the Flavorful Broth

Once the pork belly is cooked to perfection, let it cool slightly, slice it into 2/3-inch thick slabs, and transfer it to a clay pot. Gather the spices and aromatics in a spice bag, including Kaempferia galanga, cloves, cinnamon stick, black cardamom, star anise, bay leaves, hot dried chilies, Sichuan peppercorns, fennel seeds, scallions, ginger, and garlic. Add the spice bag to the clay pot along with soy sauce, Chinese cooking wine, dark soy sauce, sugar, and water. Bring the mixture to a boil and taste to adjust the saltiness, adding salt if necessary. Let it simmer for 2 hours to develop the rich flavors.

Preparing the Noodles

While the pork simmers, prepare the noodles. If using thick rice noodles, soak them in hot water for 20 minutes to achieve the best texture. Drain the noodles and set them aside. If using other types of noodles, follow the package instructions for cooking.

Bringing It All Together

When the pork has simmered for 2 hours and is tender and flavorful, remove the spice bag. Add the drained rice noodles to the clay pot and turn the heat to high to bring it to a boil. Be careful not to overcook the noodles. Add baby bok choy or your choice of leafy vegetables and blanch them for 20-30 seconds.

Serving Suggestions

To balance the richness of the pork belly, serve the Braised Pork Belly Noodle Soup with some spicy pickled long beans or zha cai. These tangy and fermented accompaniments add the perfect touch of acidity. If you don’t have these pickles, feel free to use other pickled options like Korean kimchi, sour radish, pickled cucumber, or jalapeno.

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Braised Pork Belly Noodle Soup

The Final Verdict

The end result is a bowl of Braised Pork Belly Noodle Soup that is simply irresistible. The tender pork belly practically melts in your mouth, while the rich and flavorful broth satisfies your taste buds. The deep-frying process adds a delightful aroma and enhances the overall taste experience. And don’t forget about the rice noodles – their smooth and bouncy texture creates a delightful slurping sensation, making every bite a true delight.

So why not embark on a culinary adventure and try this Braised Pork Belly Noodle Soup for yourself? Your taste buds will thank you.

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