Peter Hoffman
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Ossabaw Pork Belly with Morels, Green Garlic & Spring Herbs

Peter Hoffman, Back Forty / June 2011

For 4 servings (requires advance preparation)

Pork belly:
• 2 1/2 cups kosher salt
• 2 cups superfine sugar
• 12 juniper berries
• 12 whole cloves
• 12 black peppercorns
• 3 bay leaves
• 1 lb. Ossabaw pork belly
• 1 Tbsp. grapeseed oil
• 1 leek, finely chopped
• 1 carrot, finely chopped
• 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
• 4 cloves garlic, minced
• 1 cup chicken stock
• 1/2 cup white wine

  1. Bring 1 gal. water, salt, sugar, juniper berries, cloves, peppercorns, and bay leaves to a boil in large pot; remove from heat; cool; add pork; cover; reserve in refrigerator up to 5 days.

  2. Heat oven to 300°F.

  3. Heat oil in roasting pan over medium-high heat; add vegetables; cook until softened; remove pork from brine; add pork skin side up; gradually add stock and wine (meat should not be swimming in pan); cook until brown, basting several times; place in oven; cook 2 hours; remove from oven; remove meat from liquid; cut into 4 pieces; reserve (keep warm); reserve cooking liquid separately.

Roasted Jerusalem artichokes:
• 1 lb. Jerusalem artichokes, trimmed and cut into chunks
• extra-virgin olive oil
• salt
• black pepper, freshly ground

  1. Heat oven to 450°F.

  2. Place Jerusalem artichokes in a bowl; drizzle with oil; season; toss to coat; spread out on baking sheet; roast until tender (about 25 minutes); remove from oven; reserve (keep warm).

Assembly:
• 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 green garlic, stalk and bulb thinly sliced into rounds
• 1/2 lb. morels, thinly sliced into rounds
• 2 Tbsps. Chartreuse or Pernod
• 1 bunch chives
• 3 sprigs lovage
• 5 chive blossoms
• salt
• 1 lemon, juiced

  1. Heat oil in sauté pan set over medium heat; add garlic; cook, stirring, 1 to 2 minutes; add morels; cook 1 minute; add 1 Tbsp. Chartreuse and some reserved braising liquid; bring to a boil; reduce to sauce consistency; add remaining 1 Tbsp. Chartreuse and a little more braising liquid; add herbs; stir well; season; add juice; remove from heat; reserve (keep warm).

  2. To serve, place mushrooms in center of each serving plate; top with pork belly; divide Jerusalem artichokes among plates, placing to side of pork and morels; sprinkle pork with remaining herbs.

What to drink: Rully rouge