Tuesday, April 14, 2009

on belly, and breakfast

Growing up, my dad was the cook of our little family. His favourite things to cook, not surprisingly, were also the same things he loved to eat, which meant that depending on his mood we ate a lot of whole steamed fish with ginger and green onion, or chili-laced soupy noodles (less spicy for me, but just barely) and pan fried dumplings.

One of his many loves, other than eggs (which I'm sure he could, and would, eat boiled, poached, fried over-easy with XO sauce...) and sunday breakfast (with thick cut home fries, sprinkled with paprika, perfect with - you guessed it, eggs) was pork belly. Braised, roasted, bbq'd, cured or smoked, belly was just that one thing that made a good day even better.

And what's not to love, as Fergus Henderson, that most eloquent of men on the subject of piggy heads and tails and everything in between, has said:
Pork Belly is a wonderful thing. It's onomatopoeic, belly is like it sounds - reassuring, steadying, and splendid to cook due to its fatty nature. It's not a cut of meat to rush; with that, a certain calm is imbued in the belly. There's nothing like a pork belly to steady the nerves.


Oh, belly, belly, belly. It does make me think of goofy Woody in Cheers, b-e-l-l-yyyyy. Why? Because you're miiine.


And so, on one lazy saturday afternoon spent puttering around the house, I put on a pot of that most reassuring, yes, of things, braised pork belly. A happy day, in my books!


Just as dad did, ginger, green onion....


...with a touch of this brown sugar. Isn't it nice how the slabs sort of look like belly? In goes a splash of dark mushroom soy sauce and chinese cooking wine, stock, star anise and a teeny tiny piece of cassia bark. Simmer, skim, do some laundry. (And by "laundry" I mean goof around on facebook, of course.)


Oh yes. This is good. And definitely a favourite that will stay in this family!


A simple accompaniment of rice and steamed veg is more than enough to round out this dinner...

...or is it?

Ever the one to gild the lily, and knowing that dad would so approve, I went whole hog (sorry) and splurged on this little ditty for sunday breakfast.


Braised pork belly, fried, with mushrooms, fried egg and a toasty hash brown.


Hoo yeah, that sure was tasty. I think I might just have a new one to add to my list of Good Sunday Breakfasts! One that sings the praises of b-e-l-l-y....


  1. This is my roomate's stab at braised pork belly:

    All the food looks great!

  2. Thanks CH! That belly looks delish.

  3. Oh my gosh, this looks so goooooood. I will be trying this...thanks Flo!

  4. hi thislittle piggy, awesome. pork belly for breakfast? ha. i just made some pork belly recently as well. did you get any 'special belly parts'? http://eatdrinknbmerry.blogspot.com/2009/04/porchestra-symphony-of-swine.html

  5. I can't look away from that plate of pork belly and eggs. . .I can't, I just can't. . .it looks like heaven on a plate.