This recipe appears in:The Food Lab Redux: How to Make the Perfect Bowl of Tonkotsu Ramen The Food Lab, Ramen Edition: How to Make Chashu Pork Belly
About the author: J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is the Managing Editor of Serious Eats where he likes to explore the science of home cooking in his weekly column The Food Lab. You can follow him at @thefoodlab on Twitter, or at The Food Lab on Facebook.
- 2 pound slab of boneless pork belly, skin-on
- 1/2 cup soy sauce
- 1 cup sake
- 1 cup mirin
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 6 scallions, roughly chopped
- 6 whole garlic cloves
- One 2-inch knob ginger, roughly sliced
- 1 whole shallot, split in half (skin on)
Lay pork belly on cutting board and roll up lengthwise, with skin facing out.
Using butchers twine, tightly secure pork belly at 3/4-inch intervals.
Preheat oven to 275°F. Heat 1 cup water, soy sauce, sake, mirin, sugar, scallions, garlic, ginger, and shallot in a medium saucepan over high heat until boiling. Add pork belly (it won't be submerged). Cover with a lid left slightly ajar. Transfer to oven and cook, turning pork occasionally, until pork is fully tender and a cake tester or thin knife inserted into its center meets little resistance, 3 to 4 hours.Transfer contents to a sealed container and refrigerate until completely cool.
When ready to serve, remove pork belly and strain broth. Reserve broth for another use (like making ajitsuke tamago). Slice pork belly into thin rounds (it might help to cut it in half lengthwise first).
Reheat pork belly slices in soup broth with noodles and other garnishes. Alternatively, heat a small amount of reserved broth in a skillet and heat pork slices in broth until hot or reheat with a blowtorch, charring its surface. Serve.