Sweet and Sour Pork

Adapted by StarChefs.com
December 2021

INGREDIENTS:

Pork Belly:
1 pound pork belly, skin-off and cut into ½ cubes
½ tablespoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon sugar
Cornstarch
Neutral oil
Sweet and Sour Sauce:
½ cup distilled white vinegar
110 grams dark brown sugar
¼ cup apricot jam
2 tablespoons cranberry sauce or jam
1 cup dried hawthorn berries (optional)
To Assemble and Serve:
Bell pepper, cut into 1-inch chunks
White onion, cut into 1-inch chunks
Pineapple, cut into 1-inch chunks
Neutral oil
Cornstarch slurry (1:1 cornstarch to water)

METHOD:

For the Pork Belly

In a large, nonreactive container, combine pork belly cubes, salt, sugar, and shaoxing wine . Cover and let marinate overnight or at least 1 hour. Dust pork with cornstarch and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes to allow it to stick. Meanwhile, in a wok, heat oil to 325°F, using enough to cover the pork. Fry the pork pieces slowly, until they begin to float. Remove from oil, drain, and spread out on a tray. Let cool for at least 15 minutes or until it reaches room temperature. Reheat oil to 375°F and fry pork again for 1 minute or less until pork becomes even crispier. Remove from oil.

For the Sweet and Sour Sauce

In a bowl, mix all ingredients and 1 cup of water. Transfer to a pot then bring to a boil. Continue to cook until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Adjust seasoning.

To Assemble and Serve

Using the same oil used to fry pork, quickly blanch fry the vegetables and pineapple. Remove and allow to drain. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch and 1 tablespoon of water to make a slurry. Set aside.
 
Heat a clean pan or wok with a thin layer of oil. Add the Sweet and Sour Sauce and allow it to boil. Add vegetables, pineapple, and Pork Belly and toss to coat with Sweet and Sour Sauce. Add the cornstarch slurry a little at a time, tossing, until the Sweet and Sour Sauce thickens to desired consistency. The Sweet and Sour Sauce should cover the Pork Belly and stick to it without dripping off or being overly thickened.