How to sous vide pork belly?
Sous vide cooking is a culinary technique that utilizes precise temperature control and an airtight vacuum seal to cook food.
Pork belly is the perfect cut for sous vide because of its high-fat content and thick skin.
The long time it takes to cook pork belly in the oven or slow cooker can lead to dry, tough meat.
Sous vide reduces this risk by using low temperatures over a longer period of time, yielding juicy and tender meat every time.
Keep reading to find out how you can make your own delicious sous vide pork belly at home with minimal effort!
How long to sous vide pork belly?
As already mentioned, sous vide is a dish that requires a longer cooking time than usual because it uses a lower temperature to cook meat.
The water temperature will only be about 130 to 140 degrees F, while other traditional cooking methods like roasting or grilling will need 350 to 400 degrees F.
Depending on the thickness of the meat and how cooked you want it to be, the cooking time can vary.
However, in general, you will need hours to sous to vide pork belly, like from eight to 16 hours, even overnight or up to three days in some cases.
The low temperature and longer cooking time will result in tender meat without drying it, but sealing the moisture inside the meat instead.
3 tips for sous vide pork belly
Sous vide is a great way to cook pork belly because you won’t end up with chewy and tough meat.
There are even some tips that can help you succeed every time you sous vide pork belly.
Now let’s take a look at the following tips:
1. Don’t sous vide the whole big cut of pork belly
When having the best cut of pork belly with a perfect ratio of fat and meat, you should properly prepare and carve the meat cut so that the dish you are going to create will not only be tasty but also appealing.
Although sous vide pork belly takes a really long time, it will be hard to evenly cook the whole giant cut during that time.
Therefore, you should divide the pork belly cut into smaller pieces (should be cubes that are not too thick or thin).
This will not make it easier to marinate and cook the meat but also more convenient if you want to make sous vide pork belly ahead and freeze it for later use.
Portion the whole cut into a serving-size bag, then you just need to throw the bag in the freezer, thaw, and reheat it when needed.
2. Make sure the bag is tightly sealed and the water temperature is maintained during the cooking time
This is the key factor to resulting in the best sous vide pork belly.
We all know that to sous vide pork, we need to completely submerge the bag of pork belly in warm water for a long time, but it is crucial to give attention to details.
For example, what the temperature should be, and what kind of bag is best for sous vide?
The answer is that you should use the resealable bag and a vacuum sealer to completely get as much air out of the bag.
You can use a plate to cover the bath to prevent the bag of pork belly from floating and submerging in the warm water during the cooking time.
3. Quickly sear the sous vide pork belly for a crispy and brown crust
After you are done cooking sous vide, you should give it a sear for about two minutes until the meat is browned and a bit crispy.
Since your pork belly is already thoroughly cooked, just keep your eyes on this process and don’t walk away, otherwise, the meat can get burnt.
How to sous vide pork belly?
- A bath
- Sous vide machine
- A knife
- Resealable bag
- Paper towels
- A plate
- Cut pork belly crosswise into two-inch-wide strips or cubes (like thick bacon)
- Put the piece of pork belly into a resealable bag with desired spices and herbs like cinnamon, star anise, sage, honey, or soy sauce, then vacuum seal the bag
- Meanwhile, pour warm water into a bath and use the sous vide machine to heat it to 140 to 165 degrees F
- Submerge the tightly sealed bag of pork belly in the water bath and cover it with a plate to prevent it from floating
- Let the bag of pork belly in the warm water for eight hours or overnight if desired (make sure the water temperature is maintained at 165 degrees F
- Remove the bag from the water bath and let it rest for 15 minutes before taking the pork out
- Pat dry the pork belly with paper towels and toss it into a hot oil pan to sear for one to two minutes until browned and crispy
So now you know that sous vide pork belly turns out effortless and very flavorful.
Most of the cooking time is in the water bath and you don’t need to worry about burning meat or drying it out.
This cooking method brings out very tender and tasty meat that can satisfy anyone in your family. Just pay some attention to the preparation and keep in mind our tips to have the best sous vide pork belly anytime you make it.
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