Food Friday! Leeks and Pork Belly

Difficulty Level: 3 PITAs (totally worth it though)

Cast Iron Pan

4 whole cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
10 to 15 Chinese dried red chiles
8 ounces pork belly sliced into bite-size pieces
Dark green parts from 2 large leeks, washed and sliced
1 teaspoon sugar
1 tablespoon soy sauce

Start by heating your cast iron pan to the temperature of the sun. Once hot, begin placing pieces of pork belly into said fiery hellscape pan. Since pork belly is basically bacon it will begin to sizzle like crazy. If you are standing near the stove you are now inside what we call the “splash zone”. The oils and fats will pop out and try and murder you so you may want to considering some protective clothing.

Leave the pork belly cooking way longer than you think you should. The white of the belly should reduce considerably and you should be getting that crispy, shriveled, caramelized edge on every piece before you remove it from the pan. (I think I just drooled onto my computer.) Remove belly from pan and rest on some paper towel to absorb some of the grease. Pour off as much of the grease left in the pan as possible.

Keeping the pan hot add in garlic and chilies. Sauté until fragrant. Add in the sliced leeks and sauté until they begin to turn darker green. Add back in the pork belly and toss in the soy sauce and sugar.

Sides: White Rice (duh) or Chinese Eggplant (for extra veggie power)
Booze: J Vineyards Chardonnay (or any buttery chardonnay will do)

For weight loss: reduce amount of pork belly, increase amount of leeks, skip sugar and rice.

Original Recipe: Splendid Table

*We’ve omitted vegetable oil from the recipe as the pork belly provides more than enough greasy goodness.

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