Slow Roast Pork Belly with Gravy


  • Sea salt
  • Olive oil
  • 1-1.5kg pork belly
  • 1tbsp fennel seeds
  • 1 large or 2 small fennel bulbs, sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, peeled and bashed
  • 2-3 star anise
  • 4-5 cardamom pods
  • 3 bay leaves (ideally fresh)
  • 1 medium/large carrot, roughly chopped
  • 325ml white wine
  • 500-750ml chicken stock (depending on the size of your pan


  • Preheat your oven to 180C (160C Fan – I never cook this on Fan because it doesn’t go crispy).
  • Score the skin of the pork diagonally both ways to create a diamond pattern. Don’t go too far through.
  • Rub the skin all over with sea salt. Be generous with this, get it in the cracks and really rub it in. This will help form a nice crispy crackling.
  • Heat some oil in a large roasting tray on the hob and add the fennel bulb and 3 garlic cloves. Cook for a few minutes to release the flavours.
  • Add half the fennel seeds, star anise and cardamom pods and cook for another few minutes
  • Add the bay leaves
  • Push these to one side and add the pork skin side down to the pan. Cook for at least 5mins to turn it golden brown
  • Turn the pork over, season the skin again with a bit of salt and sprinkle the remaining fennel seeds on top.
  • Pour in the wine around the pork, being careful not to get the skin wet and scrape the flavour from the bottom of the pan. Let the wine bubble to reduce and cook away the alcohol.
  • In the mean time add the carrot around the pork – this will add a nice sweetness to the gravy.
  • Add the chicken stock to come up to the fat layer just under the skin and bring it to a boil. It’s important to get it boiling before it goes in the oven.
  • Cook in the oven for 2.5 hours.
  • Remove the pork and set it aside to rest.
  • In the mean time, add the vegetables and juices from the tray to the hob on a medium heat, add a little flour until it starts to thicken up. If it’s too thick, add a splash of water or wine. You can get creative by adding a dash of cranberry sauce or some gravy granules, more wine etc. Just keep tasting it until you love it 🙂