Four simple ingredients can make for one wicked tasty munchie or main course: pork belly – I buy mine pre-cooked at Trader Joe’s, it saves a couple of hours of boiling/braising mishegas – maple syrup, balsamic vinegar, and garlic.
Note: when I first made this, I also added some fresh rosemary to the marinade, but the more I think about it, the more I believe that was a step too far. The rosemary, to me, brought out the sweetness of the maple syrup a little too, too much. Still tasty, tho’.
*I use 25 year old balsamic vinegar from The Oilerie. It runs about $20/bottle, but one taste and you’ll know why it’s worth it.
Combine the maple syrup together with the balsamic vinegar, garlic, and sea salt in a small pan and bring to a boil.
Simmer for ten minutes, then remove from the heat and set aside to cool. The mixture will be quite thick and syrupy.
Cut the pre-cooked pork belly into cubes and place in a gallon-sized zipper bag along with the cooled maple and balsamic mixture.
Place on a rimmed plate and stash in the fridge for a couple of hours or, always even better, overnight; flipping the bag when you think to.
When ready to cook, heat oven to 425º and apply cooking spray to a rack fitted into a foil lined baking pan.
I offered these as part of a munchie buffet and folk were popping ’em like candy; and I can promise you that leftovers, should be lucky enough to have any, are very nice indeed plucked straight from the fridge while you’re reading that ‘one last chapter’ of your latest novel.
Mmmm. Pork belly.