We got a whole pork belly with the skin on. Uncured, unsmoked, and unaltered in any way-- save removed from the pig. Since that is a lot of bacon and there were only 4 of us I cut it half.
It was marinated over night with ingredients like olive oil, lemon juice, cider vinegar, fresh thyme, fresh rosemary, chopped garlic, Serrano chiles, coarse salt and black pepper.
Then some water and butter, as if this thing needs butter
, was added to the marinade. The belly was placed skin side up in a foil pan, the marinade was poured over top, and the package was sealed tightly with aluminum foil. It got braised for 5 1/2 hours at 275. If you try this be very careful at this point as it will be soft and jiggly on a level I have never seen before. Well... there was that one college... uh... never mind.
Rested a bit, and put on a hot grill to crisp the skin. Once it was crispy it got a bourbon glaze and then rested in some olive, chives, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Sliced thin, well as thin as you can, against the grain.
I had put together, in the mean time, some home made applesauce from the grill and the wife had prepared a field green salad with a tart vinaigrette as well as a loaded tater salad. I don't have pics of all this, but trust me its important. Oh yeah... and we got some Coleman's mustard and ciabatta rolls.
So there is the sandwich. A fresh ciabatta roll, spread one side with some Coleman's mustard, spread the other side with a little homemade applesauce, pork belly on the bottom slice, and a pile of the tart greens piled on top. Close it up and be prepared for foodie heaven. Crispy, salty, sweet, spicy, tart, and unctuous. No other way to put it... It was slap and tickle for your mouth.
It was pretty delicious sliced and grilled with breakfast this morning too...