½ side fresh pork belly (1.5kg/3lb 5oz), bones removed
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp vegetable oil
200g/7oz finely chopped mixed vegetables (carrots, onions, celery and leeks)
½ head garlic
1 bay leaf
¼ bunch fresh thyme
¼ bunch fresh rosemary
2 tbsp tomato purée
1½ cardamom pods, lightly crushed
3 whole black peppercorns
¼ cinnamon stick
500ml/18fl oz apple juice
750ml/1pint 7fl oz beef or veal stock
For the pork belly, preheat the oven to 100C/200F/Gas ½.
Season the pork belly with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Heat one tablespoon of the oil in a large ovenproof casserole over a medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the pork belly and fry for 3-4 minutes, turning regularly, until golden-brown on all sides.
Remove the pork belly from the casserole and set aside on a plate.
Add the finely chopped mixed vegetables, garlic, bay leaf, thyme and rosemary to the casserole and fry for 2-3 minutes, or until softened and turning golden-brown.
Add the tomato purée and stir well. Continue to fry the ingredients for a further minute.
Meanwhile, heat a frying pan until hot, then add the cardamom pods, star anise, peppercorns and cinnamon and toast for 20-30 seconds, or until fragrant.
Add the toasted spices, apple juice and beef or veal stock to the casserole and bring the mixture to a simmer. Return the pork belly to the casserole. (NB: The liquid in the casserole should completely cover the pork belly. If not, add more water or stock.)
Cut out a circle of baking parchment large enough to fit snugly inside the casserole. Lay the cartouche over the liquid in the casserole, then place into the oven and cook for 5-6 hours, or until very tender.
When the pork is cooked, remove it from the oven and set aside to rest for one hour, still in the cooking liquid.
When the pork belly has rested, discard the cartouche, remove the pork belly from the cooking liquid and place into a roasting tray (reserve the cooking liquid). Place another, smaller roasting tray on top of the pork and weigh it down with a bag of sugar or some tinned beans. Chill in the fridge for one hour.
Meanwhile, strain the reserved cooking liquid through a fine sieve into a saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and continue to simmer until the volume of liquid has reduced and is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Set aside.
Meanwhile, for the salad, in a bowl, mix together the water, white wine vinegar, sugar and salt until well combined. Add the turnip slices and mix well to coat them in the pickling liquid. Set aside to pickle for two hours, then drain off the pickling liquid.
Add the pickled turnip slices to the remaining salad ingredients and mix well.
For the glaze, increase the oven temperature to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
Bring all of the glaze ingredients, including the reserved reduced braising liquid, to a simmer in a pan. Continue to simmer until the mixture is smooth and well combined and has thickened slightly.
When the pork belly has chilled, carve it into thick slices.
Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the pork belly slices, in batches if necessary, and fry for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until golden-brown on both sides.
Add the glaze to the pan and stir until the pork slices are completely coated. Transfer the glazed pork belly slices to the oven for 2-3 minutes, or until heated through.
To serve, divide the salad equally among four serving plates. Arrange three slices of glazed pork belly alongside each portion of salad. Drizzle over any remaining glaze.
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