It's Time To Get Fat. Real Fat!
What better way to cook a perfect, healthy pork belly than in its own natural fats? Melt down our Pasture Raised Pork Lard with aromatic onion, garlic, rosemary, and bay leaf. Tuck the pork belly over top and slow cook until the meat is tender and flaky. This method, called “confit,” can help the meat remain more tender than when cooked in broth or water. Finish this confit pork belly in the slow cooker under the broiler for a crispy top that will tuck perfectly into tacos or over the top of a crisp Asian salad. Check out our crispy pork belly confit recipe below!
Score the fatty side of the pork belly with long strokes to create a deep cross-hatch pattern. Season on both sides with sea salt and black pepper. Set it aside.
Set a minimum 4-quart slow cooker to medium heat. Add the Pure Lard to the bottom to melt. (*The amount of lard needed will be determined by the circumference of your slow cooker. The level of lard, once melted, should reach at least halfway up the sides of the pork belly.)
Chop the onion. Smash the garlic cloves and peel them. Place the onion, garlic, rosemary, and bay leaves into the slow cooker.
Once the lard has melted, place the seasoned pork belly down into the slow cooker with the fatty side facing up. Ensure there is enough lard to partially submerge the pork belly. Place the lid on the slow cooker.
With the heat still on medium, cook for 6 hours, or until the meat is tender enough to flake off. Turn the slow cooker off, remove the lid, and let it rest until cool enough to touch comfortably 30-60 minutes.
Preheat your oven to broil (low broil, if your oven has the option). Place the oven rack in the lowest position.
Remove the pork belly onto a baking sheet with your hands, careful to keep it intact. Place it fatty side up. Move the cooking sheet to the oven to crisp the fatty surface of the pork belly. Cooking times will vary based on the oven and position of the rack. Check the pork belly every 3-5 minutes to be sure it doesn’t burn.
*Note on reserving the lard: strain the liquid remaining in the slow cooker into a glass jar. Discard the solid pieces. Place the jar in the refrigerator to allow the fat to separate (it will rise to the top). Once solid, scoop the lard out into a separate jar and use as you normally would. Any liquid at the bottom can be used in broth or soup as a flavor boost.