Amy Pottinger’s Pork Belly Tacos

Ash Tsuji
November 20, 2017

I’m addicted to Food Network and every summer I look forward to a new season of Food Network Star. I love watching seasoned chefs and self-taught cooks from around the country compete for a cash prize and the title of Food Network Star. 

This year they celebrated their 13th season, and Hawaii resident Amy Pottinger was one of the finalists. I cheered her on every week as she went glamping, won the midterm mentor challenge, and even beat Bobby Flay at his own game. Her bubbly personality propelled her to the top four spot, but ultimately the Up Your Game challenge got the best of her and sent Amy back to Hawaii in episode nine.

Amy was kind enough to stop by and talk about her blog and catering company Caviar and Crayons. She also shared her recipe for pork belly tacos. Check out the video below to learn more about Amy and watch her demonstrate her recipe. 

Pork Belly Tacos with Pineapple and Pomegranate Pico de Gallo and Sriracha Mayonnaise Sauce 

For the pork belly:
3 lbs. pork belly
1/4 cup shoyu
1/4 cup white sugar
2 Tbsp. Thai chili paste
2 Tbsp. grated ginger or ginger paste
1 Tbsp. finely minced garlic
1 Tbsp. lime juice
1 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar

Mix all ingredients, minus the pork belly, until thoroughly combined. 

Use the mixture to marinate the pork belly for two hours or overnight. 

Place the pork belly, fat side up, on a baking sheet; preferably on top of a silicone mat, foil, or parchment paper. Sprinkle evenly with salt.

Bake at 425 for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 275 and cook for an additional 30-40 minutes. 

Allow the pork belly to rest. When you’re ready to serve, slice the pork belly into thin pieces and re-sear it on a hot pan to improve temperature and texture. 

For the pineapple and pomegranate pico:
1/2 pineapple
2-3 pomegranates (about 1 1/2 cups)
3 Thai red chilis
3/4 cups packed cilantro leaves
1 1/2 cups shredded purple cabbage
2 Tbsp. lime juice
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 Tbsp. honey or agave
1 tsp. grated ginger
1 tsp. grated garlic or garlic paste
Salt to taste (1/2 to 1 tsp., roughly)

Remove the core and skin from your pineapple and dice into ¼ to ½ inch cubes. Add your pineapple to a lidded mixing bowl.

Remove the pomegranate seeds and add them to the bowl. You can easily do this by rolling the pomegranate on your cutting board, and then slicing it into sections.

Chop the cilantro and add it to the bowl.

Remove the stem from the red chilis. The majority of the spiciness is in the seeds and ribs. Scrape them out depending on the level of spiciness you prefer. Finely chop the chilis and add them to the bowl.

Shred or thinly slice your purple cabbage and add it to the bowl. 

In a small bowl stir together lime juice, honey, grated ginger, garlic, and olive oil. When you’re ready to serve the slaw, add it to the bowl and toss well until everything is coated. 

Add salt to taste, and stir again. Make sure that everything is evenly seasoned. 

For the sriracha mayonnaise: 
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 Tbsp. sriracha (more if you want more spice)
1/2 tsp. garlic paste
1/2 tsp. ginger paste
1/2 Tbsp. lemon or lime juice
Pinch or two of salt

Add all ingredients to a lidded storage container, like a mason jar, and shake vigorously. You can also whisk it in a bowl if you prefer. 

Putting it all together:
Tortilla shells
Lime (optional)

Begin plating by your tortilla. You can heat it in a pan for improved flavor and texture. 

Add the pineapple and pomegranate pico. Add warm pork belly. Drizzle the sriracha mayonnaise. Finish with a squeeze of fresh lime juice. Enjoy!

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