- a comforting dish worth the effort
Serves 6 plus extras for sandwiches!

Pork rub  

            1/2 cup Brown Sugar
            2 tablespoons Fennel seed (toasted and ground)
            1 tablespoon coriander seed (toasted and ground)
            1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
            3 tablespoons Salt
            1 each thai chili (sliced)         

Pork belly

            2 pounds Pork Belly (skin removed)
            2 Carrots (peeled,  cut into medium dice)
            3 stalks Celery (cut into 1/2-inch pieces)
            2 tablespoon ginger (peeped and minced)
            1 tablespoon fresh turmeric (peeled and minced)
            1/2 Red Onion (sliced)
            2 Fennel Stalks (cut into 1/2-inch pieces)
            1 bottle Beer (your preference)
            Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Napa cabbage salad

            1 small head Napa Cabbage (shredded)
            1/2 Red Onion (sliced)
            1 bulb Fennel (thinly sliced on a mandolin)
            1/4 cup Mint (chopped)
            1/4 cup Basil Leaves (torn)
            2 tablespoonsHoney
            2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
            Salt and Pepper

Method:

For the Rub: Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Combine the rub ingredients and very thoroughly mix. Using a sharp knife, score a 1-inch grid pattern into the fat of the pork belly. Rub the pork belly all over with the spice mixture.

For the Braise: Heat a large dutch oven over medium high heat with a few tablespoons of olive oil. Sear the pork, fat side down, until brown and crispy. Be careful with the brown sugar as it will burn fast. Just keep moving the pork around the pan until a nice color develops. When the color is achieved, add the rest of the ingredients. Bring to a boil, transfer to 350 degree F oven and cook, uncovered, for 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

For the Fennel Salad: In a large bowl, combine the napa cabbage, red onion, fennel, mint, basil, 2 tablespoons ofhoney, and apple cider vinegar. Toss thoroughly to coat and season with salt and freshly ground pepper.

Once pork belly has finished cooking, take out of the braising liquid and slice to serve. Serve the pork belly with some of the salad on top.

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