Creme Brulee Pork Belly Confit

Creme Brulee Pork Belly Confit

By Mark Published: May 6, 2023

  • Yield: 11 lbs Pork Belly
  • Prep: 10 hrs 0 min
  • Cook: 6 hrs 0 min
  • Ready In: 17 hrs 0 min



  1. Combine the ingredients in a large pot, cover, and bringing to a boil. Boil for 1 minute, stirring to dissolve the salt. Remove from the heat and cool completely, then chill before using. The brine can be refrigerated for up to 3 days. This amount of brine is ideal for up to 8-10 pounds of pork.
  2. Pour the brine into a container large enough to hold the pork belly and add the pork. Refrigerate for 10 hours.
  3. Remove the pork belly (discard the brine) and rinse under cold water. Pat dry with paper towels, or let air-dry.
  4. Preheat the oven to 200°F. Heat the lard in a separate pot until melted. Double up on 2 large aluminum trays. Put the belly (skin side dow) in the aluminum tray and cover with the lard; the lard should cover the pork by 1/2 to 3/4 in.
  5. Cover, transfer to the oven, and cook until the pork is tender; this will probably take 5 1/2 to 6 hours, but start checking after 4 hours. As the belly cooks, it will lose fat and shrink
  6. Remove the aluminum tray from the oven and let cool to room temperature. The belly can simply be refrigerated in its fat, but I prefer to press it to compress the internal layers of connective tissue and force out some of the excess fat, resulting in a better texture and appearance. To press it, transfer it to a deep baking dish. Pour enough fat into the dish to just cover the belly. Cover with plastic wrap, top with a smaller baking dish, and weight it down with a brick or large can. Refrigerate for at least 12 hours; reserve the extra fat. Once it’s been pressed, the pork belly can be refrigerated, covered by fat, for up to 1 week.
  7. To serve, remove the pork belly from the refrigerator and let sit in a warm spot to soften the fat for 2 to 3 hours. You want to soften the fat enough so you can scrape it from the belly while keeping the belly as cold as possible so it will be easier to slice.
  8. Remove the pork belly from the fat, and wipe off any cooking fat that clings to the meat. Score the fat on the belly in a crosshatch pattern. The belly can be cut into any shape. Slice it or cut it into squares, and let sit a room temperature for 20 to 30 minutes before sautéing. (The fat can be reused to confit pork belly several more times as long as it does not taste too salty. Pour it into a pot and heat gently to liquefy, then strain a fine-mesh conical strainer into a storage container. Refrigerate for up to 2 months or freeze for up to 6 months)
  9. Unwrap the pork belly and place it on a cutting board. The skin-side should be as FLAT as a GRANITE-FLOOR. Trim the pork belly, according to the shape of the skin, into very clean, even and straight-edged square or rectangle. Heat up approx 2 tbsp of the confit-fat in a wide, NON-STICK pan over medium-high heat. Carefully lay the pork belly, SKIN-SIDE DOWN on the pan then turn the heat down to LOW. Take a piece of parchment paper and rest it over the pan, with a opening on the side FACING AWAY from you. Trust me, the skin is going to mini-explode and splatter. The opening allows the steam to escape, but also retain enough heat inside the pan to warm up the pork.
  10. Leave the skin to crisp up over low-heat for 18 min, then REMOVE the parchment paper (we want to eliminate the moisture inside the pan now) and cook for another 5 min. Check the skin and see if the entire depth is blistered thoroughly. If not, keep cooking for another 5 min. It took mine about 30+ minutes.
  11. Once ready, turn the pork belly over to heat up the meat-side slighly, approx 1 min.
  12. Move the pork belly to a board, skin-side up. Cover the skin with an even layer of granulated sugar. It should be thick enough that you don’t see the skin underneath. Caramelize the sugar with a blowtorch until completely melted and browned. Let the caramel harden. Invert the pork belly with the crème brûlée-side facing down. Use a VERY SHARP KNIFE, cut through the meat-layer and once the knife hits the skin-layer, PRESS THE KNIFE DOWN hard until you hear a crackle and feel the knife has cut through the skin.
  13. Serve the crème brûlée pork belly with yellow mustard.


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