Asian Inspired Barbecued Pork Belly

I came across a recipe for Char Siu, or Chinese barbecued pork belly.

It looked really tasty, and just the thing, I thought, for a tasty way to enjoy some rice noodles on a chilly evening.

Hmmm… fresh out of rice noodles.

Oh well! Regular pasta will work fine!

And that, my friends, is how I started to make substitutions…

Hoisin sauce became sweet chili sauce. Shaoxing wine became my own Sherry Peppers Sauce, Chinese Five Spice became Allspice, and, all in all, a very good dinner was enjoyed by all.

Note: I buy my pork belly pre-cooked from Trader Joe’s, which just make the prep a lot easier. If you want to make your from scratch, add in a lot of extra time.

•1/3 cup Thai chili sauce, or barbecue sauce
•1/3 cup lower sodium Tamari
•2 tbsp Sherry Peppers Sauce* or dry sherry
•1 tsp Cajun Power Spicy Garlic Pepper Sauce – or your fave hot sauce, to taste
•2 tbsp Shaoxing wine or rice vinegar
•2 tbsp honey
•2 tbsp brown sugar
•1 tbsp minced garlic
•1/2 tsp allspice

•Sliced pork belly

*No Sherry Peppers Sauce? No Problem! Simply add a bit of decent sherry (none of that “cooking” stuff) and a dash or three of your fave hot sauce, to taste.

Combine the sauce ingredients together and pour over the sliced pork belly, turning the belly over to coat both sides.

Cover and pop into the fridge to marinate for one to three hours, giving the pork a flip when you think to.

When ready to cook,. remove the pork belly from the fridge, heat your oven to 350º and apply cooking spray to a baking pan.

Note: due to the high sugar content, in the sauce, lining the pan with foil or parchment paper will help to make clean up easier.

Transfer the pork belly and marinade to the prepared baking dish and bake for about 30 minutes, flipping the slices over after 15 minutes, and basting with the marinade.

Bake until the sauce has reduced and the pork slices are slightly charred.

Remove from the oven and serve.

I had some wide spaghetti noodles that I cooked, drained, and then tossed with some of the pasta cooking water and the sauce from the baking pan.

We enjoyed it topped with the pork belly slices and scallions.

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