Back in 2009, noted pork proselytizer David Chang predicted that pig belly would become the next tuna tartare. Did Chang’s prophecy play out? Well, in both cases, a once-obscure food favored by foodies didmove squarely into the mainstream. Here in the contiguous 48, tuna tartare was a gateway to all sorts of raw-fish wonders. Think poke and sashimi, crudo and ceviche—all of which are now common fare on urban bar menus. And while pork belly’s moment at the apex of farm-to-table trendiness may have passed, it’s an enduring passion for anyone who loves a crispy, fatty, flavor-packed hunk of pork. Of course, neither food is new. Much of the world has dined on raw seafood for centuries. And cured belly—or, um, bacon—is a salty breakfast staple we all know and love. The point is that trends may come and go, but the beauty of the belly (and the tuna!) remains the same. Here, we’re sharing three simple techniques for turning tough, raw tummy into a tender, melt-in-your-mouth delicacy that augments all sorts of dishes. Short on time? Pressure-cook it. Feeling old-school? Braise it slowly in that gorgeous dutch oven decorating your stovetop. Want the best gosh-dang pork belly you’ve ever tasted? Sous vide that sucker, then watch your guests fall out of their chairs. In anything from stews to salads, sliders to steamed buns, a fatty slice of belly amps the eating experience way, way up. So go on, go cook yo’ self some pig. Because as far as we’re concerned, perfectly cooked pork belly is always a good look. Get the full technique at We've partnered with the mad food scientists at ChefSteps to bring their hyper-inventive cooking videos to F&W readers. ChefSteps shares how to make the best pork belly.

Food & Wine
April 29, 2016

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