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Hi All,

I'm a recent owner of an Amerique (and I love it!).

I'm under pressure though - I've introduced workmates and family to smoked boneless lamb, and shrimp wrapped in bacon, and a workmate has given me a pork belly to smoke. Help!

Looking at the recipes in Smoke and Spice, they don't refer to pork belly as such, but in the other pork recipes it seems that you need to remove the skin and score the layer of fat underneath. Is that right?

If not, how do I get the skin to turn into crackling?

Any advice appreciated.


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Pork belly, or 'sow belly' as it is often referred to here, is usually made into bacon here, as is 'fresh side'. We normally cure it by various methods, then smoke at 200* until 140*. It is then sliced and placed in bags to freeze or refridgerate for use later, at which time it is fried before eggs for breakfast. We also like 'breakfast' for dinner.

Sometimes we might use it fresh (not cured or smoked) for cooking in a pot of beans. Sometimes we use the finished bacon in the same manner.

My Grandmother would fry the hog skin left over from butchering. It was cut into small cubes and had alot of fat attached. Sometimes she would put the uncooked cubes in cornbread. She called it 'cracklin bread'.

Pork belly does not have enough meat attached to qualify as a 'roast' here.

Did a Google search and found this at

Slow Honey Roasted Belly of Pork

Chef: Roger Bayley
Roger Bayley's "Recipe of the Week" is featured on Mark Vale's Morning Show Wednesdays after 10.30.

Serves 4

Degree of difficulty: Low

You need:

1.3 Kg pork belly, boned
5 large onions, sliced
1 teaspoon crushed white peppercorns
3 tablespoons honey
20mls Olive oil
1-tablespoon coarse sea salt
Salt and Pepper


Preheat the oven to 180C

Score the pork belly rind with a sharp knife1cm apart. Place the sliced onions in a roasting tray and sit the pork belly, rind side up, on top. Trickle with a little olive oil and lightly press on the crushed white peppercorns and a sprinkling of coarse sea salt. Place in the oven and cook for 1 hour.

After the first hour, remove from the oven and baste any fat and juices over. If the onions are dry, then add a few tablespoons of water to the pan. Continue to cook for a further 1½ hours basting every 15-20 minutes.

The honey can now be poured over the belly and the oven temperature increased to 200C. Cook for a further 30-40 minutes, basting every 5-10 minutes. As the honey becomes hotter, it will start to caramelise and leave a rich golden glaze over the pork.

Once cooked and tender, remove the belly from the oven and leave to rest for 10-15 minutes before serving.

While the pork is resting, heat the pan on the stove with the onions and add 2 tablespoons of water. This will lift any residue from the pan and create moist cooking liquor for serving.

Hope this helps!
Hi All,

I've found the following recipies on the net that I think are easily adaptable to suit the Amerique.

I 'll post some details (and hopefully photos on how things worked out.

Thanks to all who replied.

Recipe #1:

Smoked pork belly (
(smoked on a BBQ grill with a hood)

1kg Pork Belly (Cut Into 2 X 6" Squares)


In a bowl add chopped rosemary, garlic, mustard, oil and chilies.
Mix together until well combined.
Place the pork in a large resealable plastic bag and pour the marinade overtop.
Coat pork evenly and then place bag in the refrigerator to marinate overnight.
Remove pork from refrigerator.
Pull pork out of bag and place on to a baking sheet.
Let it come to room temperature before it is slow smoked.
For drip tray: slice some onions and chop some sage into a bowl.
Mix together and add Jack Daniels and water.
Prepare smoke pouch.
Place 8 cups (2 liter) of hickory wood chips into a bowl of cold water to soak for 1 hour.
Reserve 4 cups (1 liter) of dry wood chips.
To build a smoke pouch, drain 2 cups (500ml) of the wet wood chips and squeeze excess water out.
Spread wet wood chips on a large piece of aluminum foil.
Place 1 cup (250ml) of dry wood chips on top.
Mix them together.
Close the foil around the chips to make a sealed foil package.
Use a fork to puncture holes in the top and bottom of the foil pack to allow the smoke to flow through and infuse the meat.
Repeat to make 4 pouches pouches.
Prepare the barbecue for indirect grilling.
Preheat the barbecue to 220ºF/110 ºC.
Place the drip tray on the side of the grill that is off.
Put the grate back and place the pork down on the grill.
Place the smoke pouch on the side of the grill with direct heat.
Smoke the pork over indirect heat for approximately 4 hours.
Changing the smoke pouch when smoke dissipates.
Remove from grill and let rest covered in foil for 15 minutes.
Slice thin.

Serves 6-8

60ml Jack Daniels
3 sprigs Fresh Rosemary (Roughly Chopped)
15ml Finely Chopped Garlic
15ml Grainy Mustard
3 tablespoons Olive Oil (45ml)
2 teaspoons Chilli Flakes (10ml)
1 teaspoon Cracked Black Pepper (10ml)

Drip Tray Ingredients
1 medium Onion (Sliced Into 1/2" Slices)
2 sprigs Fresh Sage
¼ cup Jack Daniel (60ml)
2 cups Water (500ml)
12 cups Apple Wood Chips (3l)

Recipe #2:

Roasted pork belly with plum sauce (
(cooked in conventional oven)

Serving size: Serves 4
Cooking time: More than 1 hour


800g boned pork belly, rind-on
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 cup (250ml) water
1½ cups (375ml) chicken stock
2 tablespoons soy sauce
¼ cup (60ml) chinese cooking wine
¼ cup (55g) firmly packed brown sugar
2 cloves garlic, sliced thinly
3cm piece fresh ginger (15g), sliced thinly
1 cinnamon stick, crushed
1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
1/3 cup (80ml) orange juice
6 whole cloves
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
4 plums (450g), cut into eight wedges
1 lebanese cucumber (130g)
1 long green chilli, sliced thinly
2/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh mint
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon caster sugar


Preheat oven to moderate (180˚C/160˚C fan-forced).

Place pork on board, rind-side up. Using sharp knife, score rind by making shallow cuts diagonally in both directions at 3cm intervals; rub combined salt and oil into cuts.

Combine the water, stock, sauce, wine, sugar, garlic, ginger, cinnamon, chilli, juice, cloves and fennel in large shallow baking dish. Place pork in dish, rind-side up; roast, uncovered, 1 hour 20 minutes. Increase oven temperature to very hot (240˚C/220˚C fan-forced). Roast pork, uncovered, further 15 minutes or until crackling is crisp.

Remove pork from dish; cover to keep warm. Strain liquid in baking dish into medium saucepan, skim away surface fat; bring to a boil. Add plum, reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, about 15 minutes or until plum sauce thickens.

Serve thickly sliced pork with plum sauce and salad.

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