Before I began working at Australian Pork, I had a whole lot of preconceived ideas about cooking pork that I can now say, have been completely flipped on their head. One of those thoughts was about pork belly. When I imagined pork belly I envisioned those delicious fancy dishes at top end restaurants, and thought that if I was to attempt at home it would a) be way out of my price range and b) would see me spending hours over a hot oven and would involve learning some sort of advanced chef technique.
What I’ve learnt? Yes, pork belly is absolutely delicious and can look terribly impressive served to my family and friends. But – there’s always a but and in the case it’s a positive but – it’s pretty damn simple to cook with. It’s also a budget-friendly choice.
Whilst I used to think pork belly was synonymous with the slow cooker, it’s also just as tender and flavourful roasted in the oven or, my favourite way to enjoy it, stir-fried.
I was recently at a colleagues house for a virtual conference and when the lunchbreak hit, he said it would only be fitting to cook a pork belly dish for lunch. When I heard the words ‘pork belly’ I have to admit, the old thought patterns flashed across my mind but it was only a matter of minutes before he placed my meal down in front of me, once and for all cementing the fact pork belly is versatile, quick, convenient and so incredibly tasty. He’d sliced the belly thinly and quickly stir-fried it with a whole lot of fresh greens and a good hit of soy, chilli and ginger. Too easy.
-Ashley Gray, Communications Manager at APL