Otto’s East-Asian pork belly bun
Crispy Duroc pork belly slices in umami seasoning meet fluffy light Chinese steamed buns and the result is an East-Asian flavour explosion beyond compare. A must-grill for all pork sous vide lovers. The whole pork belly is cooked sous vide with a soy-ginger-garlic purée, and then seared crispy on the Otto Grill. Served with the sauce in moist steamed bao buns - it can’t get more umami than that!
Ingredients for 8-10 buns
- 4 Oz soy sauce
- 4 Oz mirin
- ½ Cup sugar
- 1 Tbs. fish sauce
- 2 Spring onions, coarsely chopped
- 3 Middle sized garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- 1 Piece of ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped
- 2 Lbs. pork belly in one piece
- 2/5 Cup of mayonnaise, preferably homemade
- 12 Fresh or frozen steamed bao buns
- 1 Lettuce
Duroc pigs are the second most recorded breed of swine in the US today and their history goes way back. The legend says that Columbus himself brought the first red hogs to America on his second voyage and those were the ancestors of the Duroc hogs we know today. But to be honest, not even Otto knows whether that’s true or not. What he knows for sure, though, is that Duroc pork convinces through its natural juiciness and superior tenderness. So, feel like Columbus and discover something new – duroc pork bao buns!
Pork sous vide
Warm up the sous vide water bath to 172°F. Put soy sauce in a food processor with mirin, sugar, fish sauce, spring onions, garlic and ginger and puree coarsely. Take a large enough vacuum bag and put the whole pork belly together with the puree in there and seal it with a vacuum device.
Otto’s tip: put the content of the vacuum bag over the edge of the counter when vacuuming, so that no liquid gets sucked up.
Put the bag in a water bath and leave it in for about 10 hours at 172°F. Once the 10 hours are up, take the bag out of the water and quickly cool it down in a water bath. Then, dry the bag and put it in the fridge. The sous vide pork belly can be stored this way for up to two weeks.
Pork belly marinade
To use the pork sous vide, or at the latest when the fat has become solid, open the vacuum bag and take out the pork belly. Remove the solid fat pieces and pour the jellied liquid into a small pot. Heat up the jellied liquid until it is fluid once again and then strain it. Pour the strained liquid back into the pot and let it simmer for 10-15 minutes on middle heat until it’s reduced to 2-3 tbsp. Make sure that the liquid doesn’t burn.
Take the pot with the reduced liquid off the stove and let it cool down slightly. Put the mayonnaise in a bowl and add the liquid to the mayonnaise little by little while stirring constantly.
Give the sous vide pork belly a crispy skin
Preheat the Otto Grill onto 1500°F for 3 minutes. Cut the sous vide pork belly into 0.5-inch thick slices with the grain, so that they have just the right size to fit on the pork belly bun. Put these on the grill rack and then onto the Otto grill. Set the Meat-o-Meter to stage 2. Sear the pork belly for one minute on each side on a high flame, to make it crispy and well browned.
Pork belly bun
Steam the bao buns in a bamboo steamer or a pot with a steam function for 2-3 minutes. Cut the steamed bao buns into halves and spread Umami-mayonnaise sauce on both sides. Fill the steamed bao buns with some salad, a slice of pork belly and a slice of pickle, then serve right away. Here you go: homemade pork belly bun!