Some things are worth doing, and to me - butchering a pork belly is one of those things. It is not hard, once you try it. Not only do you get high-quality cuts of meat perfectly customized for your recipes, but it is very economical as well. I recently purchased this 15 lb. Berkshire pork belly (raised without hormones or antibiotics) on sale at D’Artagnan for about $65. That comes to $4.33 per pound. Oscar Meyer bacon costs $5.99 per pound. So you can see - better meat, less money - all it takes is a little planning and know-how. From this pork belly I am going to make four different fabulous recipes. I will vacuum-pack the different cuts and freeze them until I am ready to make each recipe. Be sure to check back for those videos.
- Home-cured Maple Espresso Bacon
- Rolled Italian Porchetta Roast
- Crispy Asian Pork Belly on Steamed Buns
- Spare Ribs with Spicy Peach Rum BBQ Sauce
Watch the video to learn how to butcher a pork belly.
The basic method I used:
The fresh D’Artagnan pork belly arrived in vacuum-sealed packing.
Using a very sharp boning knife, remove the thin strip steak.
Start at the large end, and remove the spareribs- cutting close to the bones.
Flip over and remove the strip of rind with the teats.
Cut the remaining pork belly in three sections of desired weight.
Remove the rind from the sections that will be used for Cured Bacon, and the Italian Porchetta Roast. Leave the rind on for the section that will be used for the Crispy Asian Pork Belly.
Weigh each piece, and vacuum-seal in heavy freezer bags. Mark the date, weight and cut on the outside and freeze until needed.